Norfolk firefighters pledge more help to flood-hit communities in Berkshire
14:50 15 February 2014
Firefighters in Norfolk have pledged their continued support to flood-hit communities in southern England by sending more resources to the rescue efforts.
Three flood rescue boats from Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service have returned to the county after helping flooded parts of Berkshire.
However, another 4x4 fire appliance, equipped with a raft, has been sent down to Berkshire following a request from the national resilience team and a high volume pump remains in the south to help pump out flood water.
A total of 30 people from Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service have been helping colleagues from other parts of the country for the last week.
Stuart Horth, head of resources, said 12 firefighters were set to stay in Berkshire for another week to help and the service had enough capacity to deal with the 18 weather-related call-outs on Friday night and Saturday morning.
“When we had the flooding before Christmas, crews from as far as Cornwall and Merseyside came to assist us and we are doing the same in return. “
“We asked people if they were prepared to go and the crews that came back last night were all happy to go again. They are keen to help and we have had some good feedback from people down there saying ‘thank you Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service’ and we have had some really nice messages,” he said.
The Norfolk Lowland Search and Rescue (NORLSAR) team have also returned to Chertsey to assist with the relief effort.
The volunteer crew has been working with Cheshire Search and Rescue Team in Walton-on-Thames and Sunbury today.
In one call, the team were tasked to a missing person hunt in Runnymede.
A man had been seen near the spilled banks of the Thames and the team used its 4x4 vehicle to search for him.
After looking for one and a half hours, the search was called off in conjunction with Surrey Police as the man had not been reported missing and could not be located.
Paul Webber, chairman of NORLSAR, said the lack rain in the area had helped river levels to lower.
The team is likely to return home to Norfolk tonight, according to Mr Webber.