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Heavy rain expected – motorists urged to drive carefully this weekend

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Road users are being asked to travel with care this weekend as rain is forecast and flooding likely in several areas.

A Yellow Weather Warning is in place with heavy rain expected intermittently from mid-morning Friday 18 February to midday Sunday 20 February.

Over the three days many areas will see between 10-20mm of rainfall, with as much as 150mm falling over the three days on top of Dartmoor.

Additionally, there is the potential for shorter lived, more intense spells of rain almost anywhere.

While some of the amounts are not particularly high, rainfall on already saturated ground is likely to cause flooding on some roads, particularly those near water courses.

Sodden ground from previous rainfall may also increase the likelihood of fallen trees in some areas.

This could make weekend driving conditions hazardous in some places, Devon County Council (DCC) is warning.

Strong winds are also expected, with windspeeds on coasts and high ground up to 45-55mph, occasionally 60mph, with inland windspeeds closer to 35-45mph.

Devon County Council has extra stand-by resources available through their contractor Skanska if required.

Drivers are reminded that they should not be making any non-essential journeys during lockdown.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, DCC’s Cabinet Member for Highways Management, said:

Photo of Councillor Stuart Hughes
Councillor Stuart Hughes

“Rain could cause localised surface flooding on roads and swollen rivers,  with the possibility of fallen trees.
“We’re asking people to remember not to attempt to drive through roads that have been temporarily closed, or floodwater, and to be aware of the increased likelihood of debris on the highway.
“Motorists should drive with caution and remember in wet conditions stopping distances will increase.
“Remember that we should be staying home, but if your journey is essential this weekend, for instance to get vaccinated or to go to work because you are unable to work from home,  allow extra time, and listen to traffic reports.
“Highways team will be responding to highway emergencies around the clock throughout the weekend.”

For more information and to stay up to date on any issues on Devon’s roads, follow @DevonAlert on Twitter.