Red Cross on standby as extreme weather hits South West

The British Red Cross has confirmed their emergency response teams are on standby across the South West today as heavy rain is set to hit the region for 24 hours. Flooding and damage from the extreme weather is expected.

The deluge began on Wednesday (Jan 11) and overnight has caused multiple closures on roads across Bristol including the M32 as well as forcing trains between Temple Meads and Swindon to be diverted. A yellow weather warning is in place until 5pm this evening (Jan 12).

There have also been reports of flooding in Lawrence Weston and Keynsham with drivers facing huge diversions to avoid roads which have become impassable. British Red Cross has warned people to stay indoors as much as possible until the extreme weather has passed.

Read next: Fury over waterlogged graves and slippery footpaths at Bristol Cemetery

Chris Davies, head of crisis response at the British Red Cross said: “We know from experience that emergency situations like flooding or damage to property after bad weather can be stressful, dangerous and upsetting. But weather warnings can be helpful because they can help you prepare for the unexpected, especially if you live in an area that is predicted to be affected.

“There are a few practical steps you can take to help you prepare before, during and after bad weather. It’s practical things like making sure your mobile phone is fully changed and that you have torches. Also having an emergency kit handy with all your important documents and contacts. And making sure to check in with family, friends and neighbours to see that they are safe and well.

“In the meantime, the British Red Cross emergency response team is on standby to help, should anything happen and should our support be needed.”

For those who cannot stay indoors today British Red Cross has advised people check the latest weather updates online (you can follow Bristol Live’s weather blog here ) prepare an emergency kit including a torch, mobile phone charger and a list of emergency contact numbers, and if you are outside seek shelter in substantial buildings or vehicles, not under trees.

Once the bad weather has passed check in on vulnerable neighbours, and avoid walking next to walls buildings and trees as these will have been weakened.

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