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Storm Dennis: Roads and homes flooded as region battered again

Homes were flooded and cars were stranded as Stormed Dennis lashed the Black Country and Staffordshire with rain and strong winds.

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This drone shot shows Walsall Arboretum flooded after Storm Dennis. Photo: Paul Turner

Firefighters were called out hundreds of times in 24 hours, including to around 15 homes affected by flooding in Norton Canes, Cannock, on Sunday morning.

Homes in Stag Crescent were flooded, Burntwood Road was closed and electricity had to be isolated after a stream burst its bank in Norton Canes, Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service said.

Three homes in Gospel Ash Road, Bobbington, were also flooded while much of Bewdley was under water and numerous roads across the region were shut.

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Flooding on the A38 at Fradley, near Lichfield
Flooded Linthouse Lane in Wednesfield

In the 24 hours between 3pm yesterday and 3pm today, West Midlands Fire Service and Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service received more than 280 weather-related emergency calls.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman urged members of the public to stay at home where possible and not to drive through flood water.

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The M54 was shut eastbound from its final junction to the M6 due to severe flooding throughout the day, although a stretch closed westbound at Telford in the early hours was back open by 6am.

One lane of the M6 was closed northbound at Stafford's Junction 14, while Manor Way in Halesowen and "a large majority" of roads into Walsall were flooded and closed at 8am according to police.

One road under water again was Lichfield Road between Walsall and Rushall, where 82-year-old man Peter Harnwell died when his car became submerged in water in 2018.

Flooding at Trescott Ford, Bridgnorth Road, where a submerged car can be seen
Fooding in Walsall Arboretum on Sunday

The A454 Bridgnorth Road in between Jenny Walkers Lane and Trescott Ford was completely under water this morning, while the A5 was flooded under the Stretton Aqueduct bridge near Gailey and the A442 was also affected.

Regular flooding spot Sandon Road in Stafford was again under water outside the Shell petrol station, while Linthouse Lane in Wednesfield was also flooded.

Attractions including Walsall Arboretum and Amerton Farm were under water, with the farm closing after a stream burst its bank, and Rugeley’s 10-mile road race was cancelled by organisers

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At about 11am on Sunday there were 250 flood warnings across the UK, meaning immediate action is required, and 344 flood alerts warning people to be prepared.

Flooding in Longwood Lane, Walsall. Photo: David Mcewan
The A461 just past Muckley towards Lichfield. Photo: Elizabeth Sara

In the Black Country, flood warnings were in place for the River Tame at Bescot, near the M6 in Walsall, the River Stour in Stourbridge and Kinver, and for Smestow Brook at Hinksford.

Warnings were also in place for the River Penk from Coven to Stafford and for the River Severn in Bewdley and Stourport-on-Severn.

Elsewhere flood barriers were installed at Ironbridge and a major incident was declared in Ludlow in Shropshire and Tenbury Wells in Worcestershire where the River Teme had flooded.

Some train services were still suspended into the evening and West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway have said there is a strong chance tomorrow morning's services will also be affected. Services to and from the north west of England are severely disrupted due to damage to overhead power lines near Stafford and Runcorn.

Looking forward

Flood hit areas could still feel the effects of the heavy rains brought by Storm Dennis after it has passed, experts have warned.

Parts of the UK were buffeted with winds of more than 90mph while more than a month’s worth of rain fell in 48 hours, leading to to a record number of flood warnings and alerts in England.

But as Storm Dennis begins to move away, experts have warned that the UK still faces wet and windy weather and flooding.

The Environment Agency (EA) urged people to remain vigilant and said “significant” river and surface water flooding is expected to continue into next week.

Flood duty manager Caroline Douglass added: “Storm Dennis will continue to bring disruptive weather into early next week, and there are flood warnings in place across much of England.

“We urge people to check the flood risk in their area and remain vigilant.”

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