Fire chief says A259 must be ‘sorted out’ following floods

Sort out the A259, the senior fire officer in Bognor Regis has urged.

West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service’s Arun district commander, Jeremy Beard, said the flooding on the main road which served the town was a problem for the emergency services.

The A259 was closed in North Bersted and two locations in Felpham on Monday (June 11).

“We could have got high capacity vehicles on that road if it had been open. We need to look at it in the dry now before the weekend. This is very important,” he said.

The road’s closure made it impossible for the service to use its bigger vehicles, he told environment secretary Caroline Spelman.

He agreed with her suggestion for an urgent meeting with agencies such as the county and district councils and the Environment Agency to discuss how that could be achieved.

Chief Inspector Jane Derrick, Sussex Police’s Arun commander, said: “There is one road into Bognor and one road out.

“That is on a winding route through a private housing estate when the main road is closed.

“As more roads were becoming affected on the outskirts, we really needed to think about what we could do.

“We really do need to consider how we can get people in from outside.

“We had a problem getting them to realise how serious the problem was here because they couldn’t see it and they can’t come in to see it.”

She and Commander Beard both said how difficult it had been to get accurate and up to date information about roads such as the A259 being shut because of flooding.