Statement from Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss on flooding in the north of England
This news item is not being updated. Read Winter flooding 2015: community support for current information.
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said:
My thoughts are with the thousands of families affected by the significant flooding we have seen over large parts of Northern England.
In many areas, the impact of further heavy rain falling on already saturated ground is unprecedented, with record river levels across Lancashire and Yorkshire causing flooding in upwards of 3,500 properties and the evacuation of hundreds of homes. As a result there is disruption in many areas, including homes without power.
Our priority remains protecting people and restoring services and the Environment Agency, emergency services and the military have once again been working through the night and this vital work continues today.
Temporary defences, pumps, additional staff and troops were deployed across the region on Christmas Day to help prepare communities and where possible to reduce the impact.
We are closely monitoring this fast-moving situation to ensure all available resources are being provided to the region and the Prime Minister will chair a meeting of Cobr to ensure that across government all necessary support is made available.
I am in Yorkshire and Lancashire today to see first hand the impact of these floods on businesses and homeowners and to ensure the focus remains helping those affected get back to normal as soon as possible.
While the worst of the rainfall has passed for now, the potential for further flooding is very real while rivers continue to respond.
This morning 31 severe warnings remain in place and the Environment Agency is continues to warn communities across the north of England to check their flood risk and be cautious if travelling.