Cumbria severe weather and flooding declared major incident

By Rachael Grealish

Following the effects of Storm Desmond, the fourth named storm to hit the county, Cumbria Police and partner agencies have now declared the severe weather across Cumbria a major incident.

All partner agencies are working closely together to try and resolve the issue and keep the public of Cumbria safe. All agencies are utilising their specialist skills in the face of very challenging weather conditions.

Many of Cumbria’s roads are blocked or impassable due to flooding and widespread surface water.

In particular roads around Keswick and Kendal are blocked and we advise people not to travel in or out of those areas.

Cumbria Police would urge the public to respect road closed signs and drive with caution on all roads and we are urging people not to walk or drive through any flood water of which they cannot judge the depth.

Chair of the Strategic Coordinating Group, Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Andy Towler said: “Due to the current weather conditions being experienced across Cumbria, the emergency services are experiencing a high number of flooding related calls. These include a number of rescues of people from vehicles stuck in flood water.

“Apart from the obvious risk to members of the public, the abandoned vehicles are then causing considerable problems for emergency services when travelling around the county.”

People in parts of Appleby and Keswick have been evacuated from properties and other residents have been advised to consider self-evacuating to stay with family/friends, or to visit their local reception centre for advice and shelter. If you decide to self-evacuate, please inform your family and friends where you are going, and that you are safe, to avoid concerned relatives contacting emergency services.

Severe winds can sometimes cause damage to the power network, if you have a power cut or if you notice any power lines down please stay away and contact Electricity North West on 0800 195 4141, www.electricitynorthwest.co.uk or follow @ElectricityNW for live updates. Should your property be affected by a flood please be extremely careful and do not touch any electrical equipment or power cables.

For  more information about flood alerts, visit http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/homeandleisure/floods/31618.aspx

Visit the Traffic Link map at www.cumbria.police.uk/traffic-link-map to keep up to date with the latest situation on the roads.

Keep up-to-date with the weather at http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/public/weather/warnings/#?tab=map

To keep up to date with the latest weather forecasts, visit the Met Office website: http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/

Tune in to your local BBC Radio station to keep up to date with road and school closures and other community issues:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/england/cumbria/

You can also contact the Cumbria Highways Hotline on 0845 609 6609.