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Flooding Set To Worsen Across UK, Environment Agency Warns (PICTURES)

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Flooding across the UK is set to worsen as experts warn of "substantial" rainfall in the next 24 hours.

It will compound misery for those in areas already suffering from severe floods following the downpours earlier this week, which forced hundreds to evacuate their homes and killed a driver.

The Environment Agency (EA) has 52 flood warnings and 159 less serious flood alerts in place as England, Wales and Scotland braces itself for one inch of rain and gusts of up to 60mph on Saturday.

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Flooding in the UK in the past few days has already led to one death

The EA said nearly 300 properties had already flooded across the UK since Tuesday and on Thursday night a man died when he became trapped in his 4x4 after it became wedged under a bridge in Chew Stoke, Somerset.

Many areas are already saturated with water following the persistent rainfall this week, despite Friday's brief respite from the stormy weather, the Press Association reported.

Surface water flooding and river flooding has affected the south west, central and north west of England and Wales.

A spokesman for the MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: "There will be substantial rainfall over the next 24 hours into Sunday morning for most of the UK.

"More than one inch of rain will fall in some areas which will not be welcome given the recent flooding.

"It will be quite disruptive.

"Winds will strong throughout the day but particularly overnight reaching peaks of up to 60mph on the south coast."

He added that the rain and winds will begin in the south of England and Wales before pushing north throughout the day and overnight.

Bright skies will follow on Sunday afternoon, but they will soon be eclipsed by more showers and cold temperatures in the early part of next week.

The AA said the last few days had been some of its busiest for flood-related call-outs.

Those injured in weather-related incidents included an elderly pedestrian whose head was cut after being struck by a tree, two teenage girls taken to hospital with head and shoulder injuries, and a female driver in her 50s who escaped with minor injuries after her car was crushed by a falling tree trunk.

Darron Burness, the AA's head of special operations, said on Friday: "With more heavy rain forecast across the Midlands, Wales and the South West, road conditions in the affected areas are likely to only get worse as the ground is so saturated.

"Even if you think you know your local roads, don't be complacent, as flash-flooding continues to be a real risk and is catching people out."

Meanwhile, Network Rail said trains were likely to be suspended between Exeter and Bristol until Monday.

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