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Last Updated: Monday, 23 July 2007, 11:56 GMT 12:56 UK
Flood rescues in Powys villages
Residents reported river levels rising within minutes, leading to flash-floods.

Fire crews have rescued people and pumped out homes in two Powys villages affected by flood water in one of the worst-hit areas of Wales.

Ten people were taken to safety at Tregynon while a dozen homes were flooded at Bettws Cedewain on Sunday.

Some roads around Welshpool remained closed and rail services between Swansea and London were restricted.

Rachel Roberts, one of the residents affected by the flooding, said it had been on an unprecedented scale.

She said she was warned the water was on its way and tried to alert her neighbours.

"I knocked on doors to make sure everyone I could get hold of was aware and then just moved as much stuff as we could upstairs, put boards on the doors to try and seal it, but it was no use," she said.

The flooding has caused several problems in Powys

"It was coming in through the walls - it's unbelievable. I've lived here 20 years and I've never seen anything like this."

Fellow resident Tim Griffin said the water had "gone through everything".

"It is terrible, it has taken everything in the gardens - all the sheds and the chicken coop, the fences, trees have gone down river - there must have been a tidal wave came down."

It is understood a pet dog was swept away and chickens on a smallholding drowned.

Geraint Jones, of Fraithwen near Tregynon, said the floodwater rose at an "alarming pace," after water levels on a brook rose rapidly.

He said around 30 sheep on neighbouring farmland were washed downstream, with half finding land but others were unaccounted for.

On its website, First Great Western said there was a reduced and amended service between London Paddington and south Wales.

Rachel Roberts
Rachel Roberts said the floods were "unbelievable"

Elsewhere on Sunday, five people were ferried to safety from a house at Pool Quay near Welshpool after they were cut off by floods.

In a separate incident, the boat was needed to reach two adults and a boy who were stranded in a car on the A483.

Earlier, fire crews had also dealt with flooding in Neath, Baglan, Glynneath and Briton Ferry.

Environment Agency Wales spokesman Martin Watkins said Wales escaped the worst of the flooding because most of the rain had fallen on streams and rivers that flowed into the River Severn, rather than rivers such as the Wye or the Usk.

There had been problems with the Wye, which has its source in Wales, but these had been mainly limited to the area below Hereford city.

Environment Agency flood warnings explained
Flood watch - Flooding of low lying land is expected. Be aware, Be prepared, Watch out.
Flood warning - Flooding of homes and businesses is expected. Act Now!
Severe flood warning - Severe flooding is expected. There is extreme danger to life and property. Act Now!
All Clear - Flood watches or warnings are no longer in force.
Source: Environment Agency Wales

The rain in Wales had not been as heavy as in areas such as the Midlands and the Herefordshire border, he added.

"Although we escaped the worst of this present downpour, people still need to be alert," he said.

"There is more heavy rain forecast for Wednesday so don't get complacent."

And he advised anyone planning to leave the house for day or two to leave a contact number with a neighbour.

There are five flood warnings and five flood watches still in place, according to the Environment Agency's website.

The flood warnings are at places along the river Wye and the Lower Dee Valley from Llangollen to Chester.

The flood watches again concern the river Wye and the Lower Dee catchment, as well as the river Lugg and North Ceredigion.

The Environment Agency's 24-hour Floodline number is 0845 988 1188.

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25 Jun 07 |  Have Your Say
Flooding leads to more disruption
21 Jul 07 |  South East Wales
Schools evacuated in flash floods
20 Jul 07 |  South East Wales

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