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Drivers ignoring flood warnings

27/11/13

By Daniel Machin

Flooded roads can be a big problem at this time of year - but it appears some drivers are prepared to try and tackle them in a bid to get to their destination.

A Populus survey conducted for the Environment Agency and the AA reveals that nearly 2 per cent of motorists would ignore a road-closed sign.

Meanwhile 42 per cent would even blindly follow the vehicle in front if it managed to cross a flooded road successfully.

Both the agency and the motoring group strongly advise not entering floodwater that is moving or is more than 4 inches (10cm) deep.

'Don't travel', drivers told

But 27 per cent of drivers admit they would attempt to go through moving floodwater that is nearly 12 inches (30cm) deep, rather than turning around and seeking an alternative route to their destination.

"Tragically, people die because they've taken risks and attempted to drive through floodwater just to save a few minutes," said Phil Rothwell, head of flood strategy and engagement at the Environment Agency.

"If there is widespread flooding in your area then don't travel and if a road is closed then turn around and make a detour.

"Your journey could take you a little longer but making the right decision could ultimately save your life."

North East drivers most cavalier

The AA was called out to assist a total of 9,000 vehicles in 2012 that had driven into flood water and got stuck.

However, it is believed there were thousands of other drivers out there who came close to getting trapped as they navigated flooded roads across the country.

The survey, which was based on the responses from 21,165 AA members, reveals that motorists living in the North East are most cavalier about driving through deeply flooded roads.

Men aged between 55 and 64 are the most likely to attempt to negotiate high water-level routes.


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