UPDATE: Flood gates "closed" at Christchurch Harbour as Met Office issues warnings for heavy rain (From Bournemouth Echo)
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UPDATE: Flood gates "closed" at Christchurch Harbour as Met Office issues warnings for heavy rain
BRACE yourselves for more wet weather as New Year's Day is predicted to be a wash out.
A warning for heavy rain for Bournemouth, Poole and Dorset has been issued by the Met Office.
The warning, which is valid from 6am until 11.59pm on Wednesday, reads: “Further rain, heavy at times is expected to spread quickly northeastwards across southwest and parts of southern England on Wednesday.
“Rainfall totals are expected to be widely 10-20 mm, but as much as 30-40 mmover some south facing coasts and hills. South or southwesterly gales with gusts 50-60 mph may also accompany the rain.
“With ground already saturated over much of this area, the public should be aware of the risk of further localised flooding.”
The Environment Agency tweeted that they have closed the flood gates at Christchurch Harbour due to "the current weather and high tides due this weekend."
It also issued a flood alert for Poole Harbour for high tide. The water level was expected to reach 1.31m at 9am and 9.30pm in Poole and 1.33m at 9.30am and 9.45pm in Wareham.
The alert is in force for two hours following the times of high tides.
Bournemouth council is also making preparations for the extreme conditions.
Tony Williams, chief executive, said: “We have dedicated teams of council staff working closely with emergency services, agency partners and the Environment Agency to deal with any incidents that may affect our residents.
“From emergency planning through street services, social services, housing, seafront, environmental health, building control to building maintenance, there are hundreds of council workers who could be mobilised with well-rehearsed procedures in place in case of any emergencies.
“This meant over the Christmas period our staff worked through the night clearing highways, removing dangerous fallen trees, as well as dealing with the Iford flooding effectively and efficiently. We were able to minimise the risk and discomfort to the people living there, making them warm, comfortable and fed as quickly as possible.
“If anyone knows of any incidents such as trees fallings, flooding on the road, blocked drains or road diversions please do call us on 01202 451451.”
A second warning has also been issued for Friday.
The 'yellow' warning for rain is valid from 12.05am until 9pm and says: "Another spell of unsettled weather is expected on Friday with further wet and windy conditions likely across western areas in particular. Tides will be very high, and the public should be aware of the risk of flooding, particularly in coastal districts."
Heavy rain caused misery last week when hundreds of residents had to be evacuated from their homes in Bournemouth and Christchurch due to rising river levels.
Around 200 residents were evacuated from the Gladelands Caravan Park in Ferndown on Christmas Eve and residents of Iford Bridge Home Park had to leave their homes in the early hours of Christmas Day. Around 15 residents at Beaulieu Gardens Home Park in Christchurch were also evacuated.
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