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400 calls to the fire service as flood chaos hits Lancashire
FIREFIGHTERS received more than 400 emergency calls to flooding incidents in Lancashire last night.
Fire crews were stretched to capacity, as relentless downpours flooded homes and businesses in Darwen, Bacup, Burnley and Crawshawbooth.
Calls started to reach the sevice around 7pm as the River Darwen burst its banks and flooded 300m of Duckworth Street.
More than 30 Darwen businesses and homes were damaged by flood water in a six hour period.
Residents living in properties ‘at risk’ were even advised to evacuate their homes, at firefighters waded in waist high water trying to turn off electricity supplies.
Lancashire County Council’s Emergency Planning Team set up an emergency centre at Darwen Lesiure Centre.
Other areas affected included the centre of Crawshawbooth.
The basement of a care home in Miller Barn lane, Waterfoot, flooded. Crews were worried about the electrics and pumped the water out.
They were also called to Yorkshire Street, in Bacup where several cellars had flooded are some residents were forced to leave their homes and stay with family and friends.
In Todmorden, 20 people were rescued from their homes because of severe flooding.
Police have closed Rochdale Road, in Todmorden at the junction of Longfield Road and Halifax Road, Todmorden at the juction of Eastwood Road which remain closed this morning.
Firefighters were at Hameldon Community College, Burnley, from 7.30pm to 12.30am as the school was a few inches deep over a wide area. Crews prevented the water affecting the computer equipment.
The school’s drains and water pumping system could not cope with the rain. It was called in by the caretaker.
The Environment Agency is still issuing 46 flood warnings and 30 flood alerts across the North West and advising residents in the worst affected areas only to travel if neccessary.
Burnley’s Watch manager Neil Mark said: “Every now and again we get weather incidents like this and it does it test the resilience of the whole. A lot of the time all we can do is wait until the rain stops and the water goes down to normal. There is no where we can pump it to because everywhere is flooded and water logged.”
Steve Whittam for the Environment Agency said: “ Over night many homes across the North West experienced the devastating effects of flooding, our thoughts are with those who have been effected.
Although rain has eased, river levels remain high, and will react quickly to further rainfall. We are urging people to remain vigilant and prepared for further flooding across the weekend. Local communities should check the Environment Agency website for the latest updates.”