Gloucestershire braces itself as more rain expected

First published in News Gazette Series: Photograph of the Author by , senior reporter covering Dursley, Cam, Wotton-under-Edge, Sharpness, Slimbridge, Berkeley, Coaley, Uley, North Nibley, Stinchcombe and Cambridge

EMERGENCY services in Gloucestershire are urging drivers to be careful as heavy rain is anticipated across the county for a second day.


Gloucestershire Highways has already put additional response crews in place to respond to incidents as they arise, with gully unblocking teams on standby.


However rain and high winds are expected across the county so motorists are being encouraged to stay safe by playing it safe.


The main advice is to reduce speed, drive carefully and considerately, and avoid making journeys if they aren’t necessary.


The heaviest of the rainfall is anticipated between 3pm and 8pm.


Commuters are advised to make their journey earlier or later to avoid the rush hours if at all possible.


Drivers are also being urged to check local radio bulletins for road closures before setting off and to leave extra time for a journey if necessary.


The emergency services are also advising people to be wary of high winds and to take extra care if driving through standing water alongside pedestrians or cyclists.


Jason Humm, Highways Manager at Gloucestershire County Council, said:
“Gloucestershire Highways and our colleagues at Fire and Rescue are fully prepared to respond to incidents as they occur, but we would urge drivers particularly to take special care before venturing out, and driving carefully and responsibly.”


If you have any problems on the roads, contact Gloucestershire Highways on 08000 514514.


Traffic information can be found on the Highways Agency website www.highways.gov.uk/traffic-information


Gloucestershire Police are in regular contact with the Met Office and plans for poor weather are in place, both for public safety and that of their officers and staff.


Superintendent Neil Mantle said: “As we saw yesterday standing water across the county is causing some roads to be impassable, and whilst the major routes were free flowing again some hours later the anticipated turn in the weather this afternoon could cause similar problems.


“We’d urge people to follow the advice but also ask that drivers only use the 101 phone number to report incidents and not to ask about their route home.


“Yesterday we had more than 100 calls regarding the weather, some of which were reporting incidents but many were drivers asking whether a particular road was closed and we would like to keep our lines free for those in need of help and assistance.


“We understand it is frustrating when your journey is delayed and so we will be keeping the local media and our Twitter feed up to date with closures to key routes as and when appropriate.”


Geoff Sallis, Deputy Chief Fire Officer, said: “Gloucestershire Fire & Rescue Service has planned for and is ready to respond to any incidents that occur during the anticipated bad weather this afternoon and evening.  We have also added extra capacity to deal with both weather and any other incidents.”


Meanwhile, local residents are asked to call the Environment Agency Floodline number on 0845 988 1188 or check the website for more information about what to do if they think their homes are going to flood.
 

No school closures are anticipated, but check http://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/closedschools for any updates.

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