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NEWS: Cornwall Flash Flood: Wall of Water sweeps through UK Town.

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posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 01:28 PM
The Atlantic coast of Cornwall, UK has been hit by severe sudden flash flooding. The port of Boscastle has been severely hit by a 10 foot wall of water which has collapsed one side of the riverbank. Seven helicopters including those from the Coastguard and Royal Navy have flown to the area and are lifting holiday makers off roofs. Signal fires have been lit by those who sought refuge from the rising waters by climbing trees.
The area is a scene of devastation with communications failures hindering rescue.
About 50 people are said to be trapped in their vehicles and homes
Five rescue helicopters have been scrambled to north Cornwall after reports that people have been trapped in their cars and homes by flood water.
Heavy rain storms on Monday afternoon have caused severe flooding, especially around the Boscastle area.

The Westcountry Ambulance Service is reporting that about 50 people are trapped in vehicles and houses.

The Emergency Planning Team at Cornwall County Council said problems started after 60mm (2 inches) of rain fell.

This is more than the average rainfall for north Cornwall for the whole of August.

Lower Boscastle is particularly affected. Parts of the A39 are closed, and drivers are being warned to avoid the area.

Falmouth Coastguards are also reported to be at full stretch, with three teams working in the area.

Two in-shore lifeboats have been despatched - from Port Isaac and Bude.

The emergency services are out and they are sandbagging certain houses because the river is going at full flow.

Nigel Doyle, Camelford resident

Two search and rescue helicopters have flown to the area from RNAS Culdrose and two from RMB Chivenor along with the Cornwall Air ambulance.

Two cliff rescue teams are at the scene and Cornwall County Council has also sent an emergency team, in addition to the normal emergency services - fire and ambulance crews.

Nigel Doyle, landlord of The Darlington Inn in Camelford, said sandbags were being put in place to protect properties from the swollen River Camel.

He said: "The emergency services are out and they are sandbagging certain houses because the river is going at full flow.

There is a lot of flood water out on the streets."

Mr Doyle said it had been raining heavily in the Camelford area for the past few hours.

He said: "I couldn't see out the car earlier and we had to drive about 5mph to get through it. It is the heaviest rain I have ever been out in."

Margaret Hunter, owner of the Tintagel Arms Hotel, said the rain had been "exceptional".

She said: "It has been torrential. Really, really heavy rain and storms with water running down the village. I was amazed at the volume of rain."

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

This is a breaking story. It is known that over 2 inches of rain fell in the immediate area of Boscastle in two hours, the amount of rain that would normally fall in a month.
Other towns, villages and hamlets in the area have been affected. Tintagel, reputed by locals as the birthplace of King Arthur is reported to have been affected.
Emergency services have just stated their concern that many properties have suffered structural damage.
Casualty figures are not known at present, but it is feared that some of those present in the cafes and gift shops were swept away when the wall of water rushed through Boscastle.

Related News Links:

[edit on 16-8-2004 by zero lift]

[edit on 8-16-2004 by Valhall]

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 01:47 PM

Rescue Op after Flood Washes Away Village

By PA News Reporters
A dramatic rescue operation was underway tonight after flash floods trapped scores of people in cars and buildings.

Around 30 vehicles were washed into the harbour in the picturesque north Cornwall village of Boscastle following a burst of torrential rain.

At least 15 people were airlifted to safety from the village where two buildings collapsed during the storm, the Coastguard Agency said.

Six emergency helicopters were scrambled to the scene where rising flood waters caused traffic chaos and hampered rescue efforts.

The debris-loaded water trapped around 50 people in their vehicles.

There were reports of people climbing up into trees and lighting fires to attract the attention of the emergency services.

Around 1,000 residents and holidaymakers were said to be in the worst affected areas around Boscastle. Nearby Tintagel and Camelford were also hit by the torrential rain.

In Boscastle, coastguard teams evacuated people into the village hall. Some shop keepers and residents put up sandbags in a bid to keep the water out. Others were already bailing water out of their properties.

Coastguard Agency spokesman Mark Clark said four adults and four children had been trapped on the roof of a visitor centre in Boscastle.

Further along the coast at Crackington Haven, a pub had been swamped by heavy rain.

The emergency began after around two inches of rain fell in the North Cornwall area this afternoon.

Holidaymaker Wayne Grundy told Sky News how he saw parked cars being washed out to sea.

The rain came down and turned the roads into rivers. Cars started coming down the High Street and then out to sea. I actually saw a caravan and two cars washed over the top of a bridge. I have never seen anything like it.

Mr Grundy told how he saw people climbing into windows to escape the rising water.

The bed-and-breakfast and tea shop just filled with water.

One minute they were ankle deep and the next they were up to their chests trying to climb into windows to escape the wash, he said.

MP for North Cornwall, Paul Tyler, said: Its a very dangerous situation.

I have never seen such rain for so long. Quite a lot of people have been trapped.
evon and Cornwall police said the A39 and A395 roads into the area had been closed, causing traffic gridlock on some other routes.

Six helicopters were scrambled from RAF St Mawgan and RNAS Culdrose in Cornwall and RAF Chivenor in north Devon. A coastguard helicopter from Portland was also tasked.

Lifeboats from Port Isaac and Bude had also been sent to give assistance if required, Mr Clark said.

The incident began just before 4pm when heavy rain combined with the rising tide.

zero lift

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 04:16 PM
Reuters are reporting a spokesman for the RAF Rescue Co-ordinating Centre as saying "It's a major incident. It's the biggest rescue operation in recent British history."

Britons trapped by flash floods, cars swept to sea
16 Aug 2004 20:36:24 GMT

(Updates with cars carried out to sea, other details)

By Matthew Jones

LONDON, Aug 16 (Reuters) - Flash flooding struck southwest England on Monday, sweeping cars out to sea and forcing people to cling to rooftops and trees.

Emergency workers mounted one of their biggest operations in years to rescue residents and holidaymakers along a 32-km (20-mile) stretch of the north Cornwall coast around Boscastle, 320 km (200 miles) from London.

"There are reports of babies being rescued, people stuck in trees and people being plucked from the roofs of public buildings. We are bringing them in 16 people at a time," said Michael Mulford, spokesman for the Royal Air Force's rescue coordination centre.

"It's a major incident. It's the biggest rescue operation in recent British history."

He said more than 1,000 people were affected in the area, which is popular with tourists.

"We have no information on whether there have been any casualties. It is very hard at this stage because there are so many holidaymakers in the area," a Devon and Cornwall police spokeswoman said. She added police had received reports of several people unaccounted for.

Some stranded people lit fires to attract rescuers.

zero lift

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 04:45 PM
Its been on the news over here non stop we have had so crazy weather past few weeks raining on and off I hope pantha is ok I hear she was ging on holiday to cornwall?

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 04:50 PM
We (Me and my partner/wifeish!!) have a good friend in Cornwall, luckily she is in Truro and OK, but my partner's boss (a good boss) is on holiday camping near the flooding, so we are a bit worried!

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 05:03 PM
Bloody hell! I used to live in Tintagel and know the local area very well!

Camelford is on one of the main rivers in North Cornwall and Boscastle is at the bottom of a cliff gully right on the edge of the coastline so im not surprised it got hit...

Thank gawd im living near London now 100 miles away!

posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 11:09 PM
It doesn't look to good.

Pictures Courtesy ITVNewsChannel

They had to airlift over a thousand people using RAF sea king helicopters. No word on deaths.

posted on Aug, 17 2004 @ 12:07 AM
Thats boscastle alright. The lower picture is the winding road that takes you from the top of the cliff to the bottom where the town is a drop of 100 foot.

Over 1000 people is about 1/3 of the town. poor sods.

posted on Aug, 17 2004 @ 08:17 AM
Police divers are being used to search for 15 people unaccounted for after yesterdays flash flood.


Rescuers search devasted Boscastle
Tue 17 August, 2004 11:26

By Martin Bennett

BOSCASTLE (Reuters) - Emergency services are searching the wreckage of picturesque Boscastle for 15 people unaccounted for after flash floods created a wall of water which tore through the valley.

Cars were swept out to sea, bridges were washed away and people clung to rooftops and trees for safety on Monday as torrential rain hit Cornwall.

Emergency workers mounted one of their biggest operations in years to rescue residents and holidaymakers along a 32-km (20-mile) stretch of the north Cornwall coast around Boscastle, 320 km (200 miles) from London.

As the tide and the flood waters receded on Tuesday morning, police divers searched the harbour as a police "body recovery" team stood by.

"Fifteen persons are still unaccounted for and the search of Boscastle is going on at the moment," said a spokesman for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. "Every last stone is being checked slowly and painfully."

Five other rescue teams were searching the village, where cars, boulders and uprooted trees were strewn through the streets. Some shops had been torn in half by the floodwaters, which struck at 1445 GMT on Monday.

"We've got divers who'll be going into the harbour where we think there are between 50 and 60 vehicles," Richard Stowe, Assistant Chief Constable for Devon and Cornwall Police told BBC radio. "We've obviously got to check all those to make sure there are no casualties."

zero lift

posted on Aug, 17 2004 @ 08:29 AM
In the centre of the first "Breaking News" photo is a white-painted cottage with the adjacent building swept away. I stayed in that cottage 2 years ago for a couple of weeks (during the 2002 World Cup). Beautiful area- this is a real shame- some of the houses in the village are over 300 years old.

posted on Aug, 17 2004 @ 08:49 AM
It's ok SE7EN, I'm not going until next week. This is really sad news though, I feel a little bad to be looking forward to enjoying myself in an area where such a tragedy has happened. I'm actually going down to Southern Cornwall, so not that close to where this has happened but I was at Tintagel this time last year.
I just hope that they manage find those 15 people that are still missing.

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