Flood defences worked on Chichester district coastline

THE coastline along the Chichester district survived the tidal surge last night (December 5).

There was flooding on the A259 and South Street in Emsworth, which is affecting the roads there this morning.

The Environment Agency issued flood warnings for Bosham, Itchenor and Emsworth, and flood alerts for Selsey, Elmer, Bognor, Bracklesham Bay and Thorney Island.

However, the West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said it had not been called out to any flooding related incidents in the area.

Some areas were not so lucky, and thousands of people were evacuated from their homes on the east coast of the UK after the largest North Sea surge for more than 60 years hit early yesterday evening and headed south throughout the night.

Jason Wakeford, a spokesman for the Environment Agency (EA), said: “The worst effects were in darkness overnight so it is too soon to assess the overall picture but several thousand properties have been affected in the biggest coastal event of the last 60 years and the warnings we issued were in line with that risk.

“Some 800,000 properties have been protected by the defences put in place in the last six decades and we have issued 120,000 warnings to individual properties.

“It is quite clear from those numbers that events like this are hugely dangerous - the 1953 flood claimed thousands of lives so alerts and warnings are very important to prevent such a disaster happening again.

“In places across the east coast sea levels were higher than in 1953. However, this time we had much better protection in place.”

UPDATE: West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said they were called to Sidlesham at 1.53am last night, after two houses were affected by a tidal surge.

The houses were pumped, and two further houses were inspected but were unaffected by the water.

Fire crews from Selsey and East Wittering were at the scene until 4.30am.