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Met Office issues weather warning for heavy rain

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Nearly 3in of rain is predicted to hit some places
Nearly 3in of rain is predicted to hit some places

THE New Forest and Christchurch have been included in a forecast for heavy rain to hit a swathe of the south coast in the coming days.

The Met Office issued a low-level yellow warning yesterday (Monday) of possible transport disruption as it predicted nearly 3in of rain (70mm) in some places in the region during 24 hours from 6am on Wednesday.

It said there was a “small chance” of flooding to homes and businesses as well as fast-flowing or deep floodwater causing hazardous conditions.

It gave the same likelihood to delays and cancellations of train and bus services, and said there could be difficult driving conditions.

Before the weather warning, Hampshire County Council had announced it was prioritising highway drainage works throughout the winter.

Cllr Rob Humby, HCC cabinet member for economy, transport and environment, said: “When severe weather is forecast, we have extra emergency teams and tree crews on standby around the clock, and extra equipment ready to deploy to protect the highways, including high capacity pumps and sandbags.

“Our teams will do all they can to keep the roads clear of water. Groundwater levels remain high in some areas of the county, however, and, combined with intense and heavy rainfall which can quickly overwhelm drainage systems while water drains away, some roads may suffer from surface water flooding.

“I would urge people to adhere to any warning signs on the roads and drive according to the weather conditions at all times.”

HCC also issued a reminder to landowners to maintain ditches and watercourses for which they are responsible to help prevent the roads from flooding.

The Met Office’s forecast said today: “Spells of heavy rain are expected across southern England and parts of south Wales during Wednesday and into early Thursday.

“The heaviest rain is likely to develop during Wednesday evening and continue overnight before clearing away to the southeast by Thursday morning. Much of the area is likely to see 20-40mm through this period.

“There is still some uncertainty in exactly where the heaviest rain will fall but there is the potential for some places to see as much as 50-70mm of rain. The heavy rain will be accompanied by strong north to north-easterly winds during Wednesday evening and overnight.”

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