High Winds Bring Chaos to Borough

EMERGENCY Services across the county were very busy yesterday because of the bad weather.

The Police Force Information Room, which deals with emergency calls, had over 800 ‘999’ calls and a total of 1334 calls during the 24 hour period. Of those calls 144 were related to weather problems and 98 incidents were created for trees that had come down, across the county.

Other problems were road crashes, electrical wires brought down by the storms and wind, flooding, and intruder alarms going off.

In Benfleet a number of houses were damaged what a freak wind storm passed through, lifting tiles of roofs causing damage to property and vehicles. About five roads were affected but no one was injured. Police worked with the fire brigade, local authority and Highways Agency to ensure the safety of residents and clear the roads.

In Ongar a female police officer had a lucky escape when a tree fell on her police car as she was driving from the High Street towards the Four Wantz roundabout. The tree landed on the bonnet of the car and the officer received only minor injuries.

A breakdown of the calls is as follows:

Weather related incidents: South East division: 20 (seven trees down)

South West division 17 (ten trees down)

Central division 62 (40 trees down)

Western division 28 (22 trees down)

Eastern division 19 (15 trees down)

Police advice to motorists is to continue to drive with caution, watch out for flood water on the roads, slow down and remember to put your car lights on in gloomy weather so that you can be seen, especially when driving on main roads and motorways.

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