Dry landscape: A wooden branch lies in the mud at the bank of the half-full Bewl water reservoir in Kent, England (April 5, 2012).Source: Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images
Following several months of drought, Britain experienced heavy downpours that pelted the area with more than six inches of rain in 24 hours—double the June average.
“More than 1,500 people were evacuated and 150 rescued after water gushed through homes and businesses in Ceredigion, Powys and Gwynedd,” Guardian reported.
Damage from the rains raised health concerns for communities in Wales. The Daily Post stated, “Floods which left villages devastated and families forced to move out of their homes may have released toxic pollution into farmland and rivers.”
The storms continue a pattern of wild weather, which included unseasonable May snowfalls, hail in London, and hurricane-force winds that produced 40-foot waves.
Despite the storms, water use bans remain in effect in some areas. The Independent summed up the situation with its headline: “A month and a half’s rain in 36 hours, 40 flood alerts…but there’s still a drought.”
According to the United Kingdom’s Environment Agency, “While the risk of drought with further water restrictions and associated environmental impacts this summer has reduced, the situation could deteriorate again next year if there is not enough rain this winter, particularly as groundwater levels are still low for this time of year.”
“The soggy start to the summer is likely to be just a taste of the washout in store for the rest of June with more heavy downpours expected at times throughout the next two weeks and beyond,” Telegraph reported.