Motorists attempt to drive through flooded road despite warnings
PUBLISHED: 12:25 04 April 2018 | UPDATED: 20:04 04 April 2018
PHOTO: Steve Norman
Dozens of motorists tried to cross a flooded road on the Norfolk/Cambridgeshire border after no action was taken to close it as highways bosses failed to pick up a warning from the Environment Agency (EA).
The A1101 Welney Wash Road flooded at Welney on Bank Holiday Monday.
An EA spokesman said it alerted Norfolk County Council to the flooding at about 00:10 on Monday, but no action was taken to close the flooded road until Tuesday.
The road was eventually closed on Tuesday morning.
In a statement, Norfolk County Council said: “Our highways teams were very busy over the weekend due to rainfall and flooding.
“In this instance unfortunately it seems that this particular message was not picked up our end.
“We closed the road yesterday as soon as we were made aware of the flooding.”
The EA said it was talking to Norfolk County Council to ‘ensure better communication in future’.
A police officer from Downham Market also issued a Twitter plea to drivers to avoid the area on Monday – but still motorists waded through.
PC Rod Morrison @PCRMorrison tweeted: “A1101 Welney Wash is currently flooded, please follow diversions and not become another statistic by getting stuck half way along or worse washed off the road. #drivetoarrive”
Drivers took to Twitter to express their outrage at those attempting to make it through.
Dashcam footage showed one car half submerged in water on the notorious flood risk road.
The Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust also took to social media to say that their nature reserve had limited activities on.
They tweeted on Wednesday morning: “We are still extremely flooded on the reserve, only the main hide open.”
Heavy rainfall causes the River Ouse level at Welney Causeway to rise and spill over onto the flood plains, which were built to store excess water centuries ago.
Flooding makes the A1101 impassable between Welney and Suspension Bridge, leaving the village cut off from the south and drivers facing a 30-mile detour.