Storm Christoph: Helicopter rescues family trapped by floodwater

Storm Christoph: Helicopter rescues family trapped by floodwater

A helicopter crew rescued a family trapped in their home by floodwater.

The two adults and a six-year-old child were up to their knees in water at their isolated property near Rossett, Wrexham, on the banks of the River Dee at about 20:20 GMT on Thursday.

It comes as two severe flood warnings remain in place for north Wales after Storm Christoph battered Wales.

About 80 people were evacuated from homes during flooding thought to be related to mine works in Skewen, Neath.

The family near Rossett were winched to safety with their two dogs by a police helicopter.

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said they first sent a rescue boat but conditions were too dangerous.

The two severe flood warnings cover the Lower Dee Valley from Llangollen to Trevalyn Meadows and Bangor-on-Dee.

The Welsh Government has promised to provide financial help to those affected by serious flooding, after people were forced to flee their homes and a major incident was declared.

It said it would work with councils to deliver £500 to £1,000 payments to affected households.

About 80 people were evacuated from their homes during flooding thought to be related to mine works in Skewen, Neath, while 30 residents were evacuated in Bangor-on-Dee, Wrexham.

A bridge over the River Clwyd, between Trefnant and Tremeirchion in Denbighshire, collapsed, which has led to further disruption to the community in the midst of the Covid pandemic.

Christine Marston, the Conservative councillor for Tremeirchion on Denbighshire County Council, said losing the bridge had left the community feeling “shocked and saddened”.

“It’s heart-breaking for the local residents to see such a beautiful bridge being lost to this torrent of water that came down the River Clwyd.

“The loss of this bridge will have an impact not only for locals but also the wider community, some farmers struggling to connect their livestock and their land, to the workers trying to get to work, to local residents doing their shopping and children getting to school.

“Normal routes are going to be disrupted and people will have to readjust which will have an impact on businesses and lives locally and in the wider area.”

She added the diversion set up by council officers was about 10 miles long.

The council has estimated it will take 12 to 18 months to build a replacement bridge, which she said needed to be “made of natural products in keeping with our lovely natural environment”.

Ms Marston said the council was supporting those affected “in this desperate time”.

“In the middle of a pandemic and the chaos of being in lockdown we have the natural force of nature that has brought on this massive storm.

“That has come with an already saturated ground with this 24 hours of rain which we’ve experienced has just escalated this situation. It’s just awful.”

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