In the past few months flooding has caused severe problems in Wales, which has caused damages to many residents’ homes and vehicles, as well as local roads. Last year has been one of the wettest years on record for Wales, with five and a half feet of rain falling between January 1st and December 26th 2012. One van driver had first-hand experience of the problems the flooding has caused when his Ford became trapped in a ford whilst attempting to make a delivery.
On the 31st of December the vehicle became stuck in a ford locally known as the Gritton, which separates Old Kittle Road and Church Lane in the town of Bishopston. Local residents have said that the ford often becomes flooded and dangerous to drive through; with one saying “I never drive through it. Quite often people get stuck because they’re going too fast, and a couple of years ago a dustbin lorry got stuck there. Last week the water was higher – up over the bridge.”
Shortly after noon a Fire Rescue service from Swansea West, plus swift water rescue teams from Swansea Central and Carmarthen were sent to the scene where they towed the vehicle from the muddy, four-foot torrent with the driver unharmed. Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service have received almost five hundred and fifty call outs to flood related incidents between the 1st of January and the 30th of December in 2012. One spokeswoman said that “Fire and rescue services in England and Wales do not have a statutory duty to respond to major flooding incidents, however we do work jointly with other agencies to assist in flood rescue operations. All of our firefighters have received training on water awareness, which includes the dangers and risks involving flood waters.”
For those that are worried about driving through areas in Wales or England affected by flooding, make sure you check weather reports concerning flooding in certain regions, or the Environment Agency’s website, before you set off. If you do find yourself stuck in a flood, do not attempt to move the vehicle yourself, but call your van insurance provider who can advise and help you get your vehicle towed safely back to dry land.