A POLICE officer had to be rescued after driving his new Skoda patrol car through deep floodwater.

The incident happened as floodwater continued to cause a problem on local roads, even though the area escaped the expected heavy rain at the weekend.

The officer was marooned after his engine cut out as he drove along Derritt Lane, Bransgore, which has been closed for two weeks due to flooding, with an abandoned car already in the water.

Onlooker Simon Rowley said: “He will certainly be in deep water, deeper water than he was in today.”

Private firm Wessex Fire and Rescue sent its Land Rover to tow the police car out of the water.

A Hampshire Constabulary spokesman said the officer had been returning from a response call.

“He was following several other cars that had successfully driven through the water without any difficulty, but, unfortunately, the marked Skoda Scout he was driving broke down,” he said.

“The water level did not exceed wheel height and there was no ingress of water into the interior of the car. However, the vehicle unfortunately stopped.

“It has now been recovered and will be examined at our workshops to determine the exact nature of the breakdown. “

Dorset and the New Forest suffered only brief showers on Saturday, and enjoyed a rare dry, sunny spell on Sunday.

On Sunday, local weather expert Jim Smith tweeted that Bournemouth has endured 344mm of rain over the past 50 days, 41 per cent of the area’s total annual average.

Further rain is expected this week.

Flood water caused structural damage to a building in Tollard Royal, North Dorset, and the B3081 was closed both ways as a result.

Elsewhere coastal areas were flooded at high tide, including the bottom of The Avenue at Branksome Chine, Christchurch and Mudeford quaysides and the A35 between the Bakers Arms roundabout Morden Park Corner.

Uddens Drive, near Ferndown, was closed due to a vehicle stuck in the water.

The Met Office has issued a further yellow warning of rain, covering Dorset, for Tuesday and Wednesday this week.

Up to 30mm of rain is likely to fall in the worst hit areas of the region, with wind gusts of 60-70mph, and experts have warned of the danger of further flooding in coastal areas.