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‘We are working hard to fight climate change’ - Irony as solar panel fitter’s van got stuck in flood

PUBLISHED: 18:09 25 February 2020 | UPDATED: 08:31 26 February 2020

An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford
Picture:  Archant

An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford Picture: Archant

Archant

A man who fits solar panels to combat climate change found his van submerged in flood water in a Norfolk ford.

An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford
Picture:  Archant An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford Picture: Archant

The employee at RenEnergy, a renewables installation firm in Blofield Heath, was on his way to service a customer's solar panels in Shotesham yesterday afternoon (Monday February, 24).

But the job was cut short when the van became stuck in flood water, which was reported to be over 3ft high.

Fortunately the man was unharmed in the incident, but needed the assistance of a member of the public to get safely out of the river.

Damian Baker, founder and directors of RenEnergy said: "Despite careful driving from one of our employees, the van ended up in the river at Shotesham. The water level was higher than it seemed, and the flooded ford was very slippery.

An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford
Picture:  Archant An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford Picture: Archant

"Our first priority is our employee, who was thankfully unharmed by the incident. His quick thinking and careful manoeuvring meant the situation was much less serious than it could have been. We'd like to thank the member of the public who helped him safely get out of the river, which was flowing fast at the time."

On Tuesday, the van was still in Shotesham and Mr Baker added arrangements would be made to move it when it was safe to do so.

Summing up the incident, Mr Baker said: "This recent period of prolonged rainfall and subsequent flooding is yet another symptom of climate change - something we are working hard to fight. And to end any further speculation... We were not scoping out the site for a hydroelectric installation. We're sticking with solar panels!"

The alarm was first raised by Peter Robertson, 69, wife Julie, 66, when they were out walking their dog and spotted the roof of a car in water.

They were concerned somebody was trapped inside and were later relieved to discover the vehicle was empty.

An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford
Picture:  Archant An empty van submerged in flood water at Shotesham Ford Picture: Archant

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service was called out to Shotesham following reports of a van in water at Mill Lane.

Emergency services arrived on scene shortly after 4.45pm on Monday, February 24.

But firefighters could not find anyone inside the vehicle and made the area safe.


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