The Environment Agency is advising communities in the South East to stay vigilant and be prepared for possible flooding over the New Year due to the risk of more heavy rain coupled with strong winds.
Forecasts suggest that weather conditions will be unsettled all week and heavy rain is predicted tonight for New Year’s Eve into New Year’s Day which could cause flooding from rivers and surface water.
If there is widespread and heavy rain tonight and on New Year's Day it will fall onto saturated ground and cause river levels to rise with likely flooding of low-lying land and roads.
Julia Simpson of the Environment Agency said: "Over the New Year celebrations heavy rain is forecast which could cause flooding to communities in the South East. We expect that rivers will respond to rainfall that is predicted overnight and into tomorrow.
“We are monitoring the situation very closely as river levels across the South East remain high and responsive, and standing water remains in some flood plains. Environment Agency teams have been on the ground around the clock operating pumping stations, issuing flood warnings and checking that flood banks, walls and barriers are working effectively. We urge communities to prepare in advance by signing up for free flood warnings and to take action if they receive one. A flood warning indicates that flooding is expected and immediate action is required."
The EA has advice on what to do if you are at risk from flooding on its website or by calling Floodline on 0845 9881188 . People travelling are reminded to check the latest flood updates ahead of making journeys and should not drive through dangerous floodwater.
To date, there have been 1,300 properties flooded across England. Environment Agency flood defences have protected more than 80,000 properties from flooding.