Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

New River in Newcastle; 32mm of Rain Falls in Just under an Hour

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

New River in Newcastle; 32mm of Rain Falls in Just under an Hour

Article excerpt

Byline: Rachel Flint; Ruth Warrander ; Ruth Lawson

T ORRENTIAL downpours caused chaos throughout the North East yesterday as parts of the region were brought to a standstill.

Emergency services were inundated with calls as many areas suffered severe flooding from the storms that hit around 3pm and lasted just under an hour.

Newcastle's Quayside was left under inches of water as firefighters battled to pump the rain away from usually busy roads and into the Tyne.

A number of bars and restaurants along the river were cordoned off by the fire service while they attempted to clear flood water from the premises.

A firefighter who was at the scene said: "All we can do is pump the water out. There is no one to blame, it's just that the drains can't cope. It's going to take at least a few hours to pump the water away."

Staff at Italian restaurant Secco, on Pilgrim Street in the city centre, joined firefighters to try and clear water that had poured in through the ceiling flooding the bar area.

Bar supervisor, Caroline Hejnar, 26, said: "The fire brigade were here but they couldn't really do anything to help. The bar and waiting area is completely flooded, there is possibly about three inches of water, but I cant be sure.

"The ceiling is leaking and everything is ruined. We were working together to try and clear the water, but it doesn't look good."

Commuters faced treacherous conditions during the rush-hour as some of the region's busiest road were swamped with standing water and road closures caused long delays.

Two mudslides closed the A695 between Farnley and Riding Mill, in Northumberland, which is steeply banked with trees and foliage on the south side. It remained shut late last night, but was expected to be reopened by the early hours of the morning.

At least one car was trapped between the mudslides as emergency services fought to clear the road. No one was reported injured and diversions were put in place as police advised drivers to beware of surface water.

And the Central Motorway in Newcastle was closed southbound at the Swan House roundabout from 4. …

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