Woman killed by tree as storms batter England

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A vehicle drives through floodwaters in Chew Stoke, Somerset, southwest England, on November 23, 2012. Swathes of Britain were hit by by heavy rains and strong winds for a second day on Thursday, with authorities warning of worse flooding to come at the weekend. AFP/WILL OLIVER

LONDON – A woman was killed by a falling tree in southwest England, police said Sunday, as severe flood warnings were introduced in parts of the country already soaked by rain and battered by strong winds.

The unnamed woman was taken to hospital, but died later, after a tree fell on her late Saturday in Exeter, Devon and Cornwall police said. Two other people were said to have been injured in the incident.

Cornwall in southwest England was the main focus of fears for life and property as rivers threatened to burst their banks and residents reported surges of floodwater coursing through picturesque towns.

Severe flood warnings – which the Environment Agency classifies as meaning there is a risk to life – were in place in the Cornish towns of Helston and Perranporth as well as in the pretty fishing port of Polperro.
Alan Crockford, a pub landlord in Polperro, said there had been warnings but “nobody knew it would get this bad”.

He told the BBC: “I was actually in my house and I heard a roar, and just looked outside the window and that was the first bit of water that just… came down the hill, like a river running straight down the road.”

Rail operators said many services in southwest England were disrupted due to landslides and flooding.

The Environment Agency has more than 100 less acute flood warnings in place in England and Wales as forecasters warn that more rain is on its way after days of downpours.

Originally posted at 09:37 am | Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012

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