Somerset Levels and Moors Update – December 4th 2023

Current situation

Drier weather towards the end of November resulted in river levels falling across the area. This has allowed pumping stations across the Somerset Levels & Moors to operate, and as a result, water levels on all moors have reduced significantly.

There has been significant rainfall today (Monday 4th December). As of 1700hrs, rain gauges have recorded up to 67mm of rainfall over 24 hours in Somerset. The rain has been widespread and this has caused significant impacts on the road network. We have had reports of commercial property flooding, some isolated property flooding and some impacts on community services and schools across Somerset. We would encourage any residents affected by property flooding to report this (see links at end of briefing).

These significant totals will work their way through the network of watercourses over the coming days. Our field teams are busy responding to reports of flooding and ensuring that assets are operating as expected. We have teams on duty 24/7 monitoring equipment and river levels.

As of 1700hrs, ten flood warnings and eleven flood alerts are in place for Somerset.

There is significant capacity in the moors for the water working through the system. Temporary pumps remain in place at Currymoor and Saltmoor. The stable crossing at Northmoor remains in place. Pumps have been removed from Elson’s Clyce and Haymoor as they are not needed at this time, but we are monitoring conditions closely and will respond if the situation changes.

Public events

This week, we are holding two events for Somerset Levels & Moors residents with a focus on flooding and preparations for winter. These events will be an opportunity to hear about some of the actions we have been taking to reduce flood risk, and a chance to access support and information to ensure we can all be as ready as we can be for winter rainfall.

The events will be held at:

Burrowbridge Coronation Hall – Tuesday 5th December 2023 from 5pm to 7pm

Moorland Village Hall – Thursday 7th December 2023 from 5pm to 7pm

 

Residents will also have the opportunity to speak with our partners including the Somerset Rivers Authority and Somerset Council who are also supporting the events.

 Outlook

Further rainfall is forecast overnight, but tomorrow is expected to be mainly dry. The Met Office forecast is for potentially heavy rainfall from Wednesday through to Friday, with the wettest day likely Thursday.

Flooding advice and information

Our advice to the public is to stay safe and not enter floodwater – just 30 cm of fast flowing water can move a car, and just 15 cm of fast flowing water could be enough to knock you off your feet.

  • Call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 for updates on flooding, to sign up for flood warnings, or to report flooding.
  • Go to gov.uk/prepare-for-flooding or search ‘know my flood risk’ to sign up for Environment Agency flood warnings, receive information on the risk in your area and what to do in a flood.
  • Sign up for flood warnings at gov.uk/sign-up-for-flood-warnings
  • Visit the Environment Agency website gov.uk/environment-agency which contains information on current river levels and flooding
  • Report property flooding in Somerset at https://swim.geowessex.com/somerset
  • Follow us on social media: facebook.com/environmentagencywessex  www.twitter.com/EnvAgencySW

Or visit:  www.somersetriversauthority.org.uk

Prepare for flooding in advance and stay up-to-date on weather information and warnings:

https://check-for-flooding.service.gov.uk/plan-ahead-for-flooding

What to do during a flood

Get information on what to do during a flood from:   www.gov.uk/help-during-flood

http://www.somersetprepared.org.uk/hazard-advice/flooding  www.somersetriversauthority.org.uk/useful-info

Remember: Always stay safe. In an immediate flood emergency or where there is a risk to life, follow the advice of the emergency services.

For all enquiries, or if you would like to be added to the distribution list for Somerset Levels and Moors updates, please email WessexEnquiries@environment-agency.gov.uk