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‘We’re as prepared as can be to cope with more flooding’
RESIDENTS say they are as ready as they’ll ever be in preparation for possible further flooding.
With up to 20mm of rain forecast for today those in the areas at risk including Bullstake Close off Botley Road, Oxford, hope that there will not be a repeat of last month’s flooding.
Retired grandfather-of-two Colin Howes, who lives opposite the flood defences in the close, has had his home flooded three times in 2000, 2003 and 2007.
The 75-year-old said: “We are concerned, but what can we do? We are keeping an eye on the weather.”
And grandmother-of-six Julie Lawrence, 55, of Bullstake Close, said: “It is ok at the moment.
“We have all the council workers ready here if anything happens.
“They have been working since Saturday.
“I am not panicking at the moment.”
The Met Office said as well as the rain Oxfordshire was expected to see gusts of around 45-50mph.
South Hinksey resident and Oxford Flood Alliance chairman Peter Rawcliffe said: “I think a lot of people thought ‘we will get ready again,’ we hadn’t put things away from the time before.
“They have got their flood doors in place. We are certainly as ready as we ever could be.”He added: “I think it is touch and go.”
Rodney Rose, the county councillor with responsibility for tackling flooding, said the council was prepared for a repeat of January’s flooding.
He said: “I think we are half expecting it and we are prepared for it.
“Anyone who knows they are at risk should make sure they’ve got sandbags at the ready.
“I was as pleased as I could be with how it went last time.
“We have just got to make sure again we do everything we can.
“It all depends on how much rain we get.”
Dave Bedlington, flood risk manager at the Environment Agency, said: “The forecast suggests that a lot of rain could fall across the South East over the next few days.
“And with river and groundwater levels already high this could lead to further property flooding in the coming days.
“Environment Agency teams are working around the clock to prepare for the rainfall by operating pumping stations, issuing flood warnings, and checking that flood banks, walls, and barriers are working effectively.
Data from the agency yesterday afternoon showed water levels were at 2.30m at King’s Mill off Marston Road, Oxford.
The highest level ever recorded there is 2.69m.
In the July 2007 floods, levels reached 2.58m.
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