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Commonwealth Games 2002

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BBC Weather

Saturday, 2 February, 2002, 11:12 GMT
Warning of more floods to come
Flooded roads in Crickhowell. mid Wales
Crickhowell was completely cut off by floods
Residents of mid and south Wales have been warned that the worst of the flooding may not be over.

The town of Crickhowell, mid Wales, was cut off as stormy weather continued to cause severe problems across the country on Saturday.

We just don't know what to do - the Fire Brigade and my staff have been pumping out the water, but it just comes back in

Elaine Baker, Bridge End Inn, Crickhowell

Many roads across mid, south and west Wales were closed with more than 40 flood warnings in force.

A fisherman was rescued at Porthcawl, south Wales, after he was washed off the pier by a huge wave.

It prompted coastguard warnings to people not to risk visits to coastal areas during the bad weather.

High winds forced the closure of the Dyfi Bridge at Machynlleth, mid Wales, and the old Severn Bridge, south Wales, with a 30mph speed limit and lane restrictions on the Second Severn Crossing.

Ferry services carrying Welsh rugby fans to Ireland were running despite a series of cancellations and delays.

Residents stranded

In Crickhowell, hundreds of people found themselves stranded in the town on Saturday.

A family of four had to be rescued by fire crews after they became stuck in rising water in their car near the Crickhowell Army camp.

River Usk in Crickhowell, mid Wales
The River Usk had burst its banks

Eric Bevan, who owns the Post Office in Crickhowell, said it was pretty bad.

"The only way out is over the mountain and the roads there aren't the best.

"There's a lot of surface water about in the town, but fire engines have been pumping a lot of it out.

"Spirits are pretty good. There was a young couple I spoke to who were meant to be going to Australia today.

"They were travelling through Crickhowell but now they're stuck."

Elaine Baker, proprietor of The Bridge End Inn next to the River Usk, said her pub was filled with water.

"We just don't know what to do - the Fire Brigade and my staff have been pumping out the water, but it just comes back in.

Bridge over swollen river
Driving conditions have been treacherous

"The drains are getting blocked as it's coming up through the floor," she said.

"I've been here three years and it's not been as bad as this before.

A Dyfed-Powys Police spokesman said: "Crickhowell itself is okay but access roads on the A40 between Brecon and Llandovery are blocked.

"It's an island in the middle of a lake. People can't get in and can't get out.

Geoff Champion of the Environment Agency said: "Yesterday the main concern was about coastal flooding, but now it's switching to saturated catchments and rivers.

"There is a threat of homes and businesses being flooded with the forecast being for more heavy rain."

Transport disrupted

Dyfed-Powys Police said the Dyfi Bridge in Machynlleth, mid Wales, was closed.

They also urged motorists to stay away from the flooded A484 at Llechryd.

The Gwent force said a number of roads in south east Wales were closed, mainly in the Abergavenny, Bargoed, Usk and Pontypool areas.

On the railways, services between Porthmadog and Pwllheli, north Wales, were cancelled due to poor weather.

There were no trains either between Carmarthen and Llanelli, west Wales, after flood damage to the track at Burry Port on Friday.

Ferries taking Welsh rugby fans to Ireland for Sunday's Six Nations match were subject to disruption with a series of delays and cancellations.

But delays were not expected on flights from airports in Cardiff, Manchester, Liverpool, or Bristol.

For further information call:

Floodline 0845 9881188

National Rail Inquiries 08457 484950

The BBC's John McIntyre
"It's been a testing time for the Mid and West Wales Fire Brigade"
BBC Wales's Penny Roberts
"Crickhowell is an island surrounded by a sea of floodwater"
David Penny, Bridge End Inn, Crickhowell
"The pub is completely flooded"
See also:

01 Feb 02 | Wales
Storms rage across Wales
01 Feb 02 | Wales
Travel chaos for rugby fans
01 Feb 02 | Northern Ireland
Storms cut power supplies
01 Feb 02 | UK
Storms batter Britain
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