UK braced for yet more flooding with 76 serious flood warnings in place, including 13 in already-saturated Yorkshire

Majority of flood warnings in York and surrounding villages

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The Independent Online

Yorkshire residents are bracing themselves for yet more flooding today, after 13 separate warnings were issued across the region.

The majority of the flood warnings are in York and its surrounding villages, where much of the community is still trying to get back on its feet after serious localised flooding in November.

The Environment Agency said 76 flood warnings - meaning flooding is expected and immediate action should be taken - are in force nationwide today.

There are also 109 flood alerts nationwide, warning residents to be on their guard as floods are expected.

An Environment Agency spokesman said: “Despite the improving weather conditions, there is a continued risk of localised flooding over the next few days as river and groundwater levels are still high.”

Groundwater levels are high in Berkshire, South Gloucestershire and parts of Lincolnshire and temporary flood defences remain in place along the Severn at several locations including Ironbridge and Upton.

The River Ouse in central York, which has flooded several times in the past few weeks, spilled over its banks again and is currently more than 13ft (4m) above its average summer level.

Residents in several villages along the Ouse to the south of the city, including Fulford, Acaster Selby, Acaster Malbis and Naburn, were either flooded or cut off by standing water.

Pumps are being used to clear water from pubs, restaurants, homes and hotels along its banks.

Tourists staying on a caravan site in nearby Naburn said they were marooned, unable to get on or off the site, after knee-high water engulfed roads through the village.

One said: “We can't move. I was meant to be back at work today but we can't go anywhere.”

The Highways Agency said none of Britain's major roads have been closed due to flooding.

The Environment Agency said areas that were worst-affected today, including York's surrounding villages and Wargrave, Purley and Shiplake along the Thames, should experience an improvement in coming days as the water recedes.

Work is also taking place to ensure that rivers can drain and flow freely in other parts of southern England, including Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire, West and East Sussex, it added.

The Met Office said dryer weather is due for the remainder of this week and into the weekend, with less rain expected next week.

Forecasters say 2012 is currently the fourth wettest year for the UK since records began in 1910 and, with the rainfall over the last week, the likelihood of it becoming a new record is being “closely watched”.