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Coastal areas at risk of high tide flooding

16:47 17 October 2012

On the turn: The River Torridge was till high in Bideford at 8am this morning (Wednesday), an hour-and-a-half after high tide.

On the turn: The River Torridge was till high in Bideford at 8am this morning (Wednesday), an hour-and-a-half after high tide.


Low lying coastal areas warned to be prepared for flooding as high tides peak.

RESIDENTS in coastal areas are at risk of possible flooding as high tides peak between 8pm and 9pm tonight (Wed).

The Environment Agency has issued a flood warning for most of the region’s coastlines.

The warnings cover low lying or exposed coastal communities in North Devon including Clovelly, Westward Ho!, Watermouth Cove, Combe Martin and Lynmouth.

Another warning has also been issued for low lying areas on the River Torridge including Weare Giffard, Bideford East-the-Water, Wooder Wharf and Northam.

Particularly dangerous times will be at high water which is between 8pm and 9pm tonight and between 7am and 9am tomorrow morning.

It is anticipated that gate closures will remain in force throughout.

Winds are predicted to reach around 40 to 50mph or force six to seven in a south westerly direction.

Wave heights are also forecast to be three to four metres on the North Devon coast and one-to-two metres on the south coast.

People are being urged to keep away from harbours and sea defence walls and to not leave vehicles in areas prone to risk.

This morning the River Torridge flooded part of Clarence Wharf car park in East-the-Water, Bideford.

The Environment Agency is urging people to remain vigilant and alert for possible tidal flooding.

Staff have worked through the night monitoring high tide levels, closing sea defences, checking pumping stations and making sure that professional partners are aware of the situation and will continue to do so throughout the rest of the week.

Spokesperson David Bunt said: “With the high spring tides and anticipated wind surges our teams are working hard to ensure we are prepared and are working with our professional partners to make sure the public are aware of the risk.

“We are receiving regular weather updates from the Met Office, continuously monitoring both tidal conditions and river levels and have had officers out overnight checking flood defences and closing flood gates.

“People should be aware that there could be a lot of water in coastal areas, so avoid trying to drive or walk through any flood water and be sensible when out and about, particularly around the coast.

“Now is a good time for anyone who lives in an area vulnerable to flooding to think about the precautions they can take to protect their properties.”

The Environment Agency provides a 24-hour flood warning service. Telephone 0845 988 1188 to register.

Spotted any flooding? Call the newsdesk on 01271 345056 or email your photos to

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