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Last Updated: Friday, 15 June 2007, 12:04 GMT 13:04 UK
Further flooding hits parts of NI
Your pictures of Friday's flooding

Persistent rain is causing hazardous conditions for drivers as flooding continues to affect parts of Northern Ireland, especially the Ards Peninsula.

The Met Office has warned of more heavy rain accompanied by strong winds, with the risk of localised flooding. Further rain will continue into the weekend.

Saintfield and Crossgar have been very badly hit. About six shops in the centre of Crossgar have been flooded.

Shop owner John Colgan said the water was beginning to mix with sewage.

Mr Colgan said the emergency services were trying to pump the water away from Downpatrick Street and into the River Kilmore.

"This is the worst flooding I have seen in the area in my lifetime," he said.

Bangor

"The pavements are completely covered in water and there is no way people can get about."

There is also severe flooding around Bangor, Ballynahinch, Newtownards and Comber.

The adverse weather comes as councillors meet to discuss how to best use a 5m flood relief fund.

Castlereagh and Omagh councils are also expected to receive a portion of the hardship fund.

Finance Minister Peter Robinson has given the Department of Environment the money to help people affected by this week's flooding.

Environment Minister Arlene Foster will channel the money through councils.

The executive said the money was not compensation or an admission of responsibility.

Nice weather for ducks (picture courtesy Jonathan Barr, taken in Ward Park, Bangor)
Nice weather for ducks in Ward Park, Bangor (taken by Jonathan Barr)
The funds could be used as part of the clean up operation or to help people make claims on their insurance.

The finance minister said the money was intended to provide immediate relief.

The executive will also be examining its response to the flooding with the intention of improving future emergency planning procedures.

"The executive felt that this is the best way of providing material help to people in hardship whose homes have been badly affected by flood damage," said Mr Robinson.

"The focus for this aid is not the provision of financial compensation, but instead the provision of practical assistance in areas such as cleaning up flood damage, restoring essential household utilities, and ensuring homes are made habitable as quickly as possible."

Police have advised drivers to slow down and use dipped headlights as heavy rain is causing difficult driving conditions across Northern Ireland.

There are reports of severe flooding along the Gransha Road near Bangor.

Flooding is also being reported on the Portaferry Road outside Newtownards while in Ballynahinch, the Crossgar Road was waterlogged.

Roads only passable with care include the Kempstone and Belfast roads between Comber and Dundonald as well as the Ballyblack and Crossnamuckley roads.

Please send the latest pictures of flooding in your area to nipics@bbc.co.uk.


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