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December floods: Clear up continues

Four weeks after the devastating tidal surge, the East Coast is tonight once again experiencing exceptionally high tides.

The tides are - on paper at least - even higher than the ones which last month forced hundreds of people out of their homes and left a huge bill for the damage.

However, the storms battering the South West will not combine with these super high tides to create another surge along the Yorkshire and Lincolnshire coastline.

Michael Billington was in Scarborough which is still counting the cost from last month's floods.

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More money 'being spent on flooding than ever before'

Responding to reports the Environment Agency is to shed 15% of its workforce to save money, a spokesman for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said more money is being spent on tackling the risk of flooding than ever before.

A road is closed in Salcombe, Devon following flooding. Credit: RNLI/Salcombe

They said: "We're currently spending over £2.3 billion on tackling the risk of flooding and coastal erosion. Together with contributions from other partners, this is more money than ever before.

"We'll also be making record levels of capital investment and will be spending over £400 million by 2020/21.

"In addition we have provided the Environment Agency with an above-inflation increase of £5 million on their floods maintenance work in 2015/16.

"Departments and agencies across government are having to make choices about their budgets and the Environment Agency is making their own choices about how best to use their resources."

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Your guide to UK tide times amid flood warnings

High tides and gale force winds are expected to combine to cause storm surges in parts of the UK today.

Most areas have seen the first high tide of the day. Credit: www.tidetimes.org.uk

In Portsmouth high tide is expected at 12.18, in Torquay it is expected at 19.53 and in Plymouth the tide will reach its peak at 19.23.

For a full list of tide times across the UK click here

No immediate risk to coastal areas - but flood scheme still underway

Experts say there are no problems forecast for coastal areas in our region after last month's tidal surge - but they are still working on a programme of flood defence schemes to prevent further damage.

Temporary repairs have started on a stretch of defences near Welwick in East Yorkshire, where the Environment Agency has been planning for several years to turn 345 acres of riverside farmland into wetland habitats by building new defences inland and then breaching the old defences.

"At the beginning of December the east coast saw the worst tidal surge in 60 years. Although our defences protected around 130,000 properties from flooding, the force and height of the tides combined with a surge effect damaged some of our defences so we are working now to reinstate the protection that they provided.

"There are no coastal problems currently forecast for Yorkshire over the New Year period but as always the Environment Agency will be closely monitoring weather conditions, river levels and tides.

"Householders and businesses are being reminded to check their local flood risk by visiting our website."

– Innes Thomson, flood defence manager, Environment Agency

Although the New Year will see high tides on the east coast, tide levels alone will not pose a significant flood risk, according to the Environment Agency.

For a tidal surge, high tides must be combined with atmospheric depression and high winds - a rare combination that last occurred 60 years ago.

Flood defence repairs after tidal surge

A programme of repairs is underway on flood defences in our region after the biggest tidal surge in 60 years damaged coastal areas in December.

Flood defence officers have been out inspecting 200km of defences in Yorkshire to assess damage and schedule in repair work, using the latest technology to determine how the tide has affected existing defences -as well as defence schemes that are planned for the future.

Temporary repairs have already begun on a stretch of defences near Welwick in East Yorkshire. Minor repairs to sections of a further 3km length of defences will begin in February 2014. The Environment Agency has also sandbagged low spots in defences, including Kilnsea.

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York on flood alert

Flooded River Ouse, in York. Credit: ITV Calendar

Flood alerts are in place in North Yorkshire after days of heavy rain on the Pennines. Riverside footpaths at King's Staith and Queen's Staith in York have been flooded. Guests at a local hotel had to move their cars from a riverside car park before the River Ouse burst its banks.

A warning to motorists in York city centre Credit: ITV Calendar

One flood warning was in place on Sunday morning at Naburn Lock on the outskirts of the city. The Environment Agency says this means flooding is expected and immediate action is required by those in the affected area.

Hotel guests had to move cars before a York riverside car park flooded Credit: ITV Calendar

Lower category flood alerts have been issued for other stretches of the River Ouse and the River Nidd. Businesses in York remain open and while no significant rainfall is expected throughout Sunday, unsettled weather is forecast for Monday.

Flooded riverside footpaths in York Credit: ITV Calendar

Man crushed by falling tree named

A man who died after being struck by a falling tree has been named as John Arthur White.

The 83-year-old man was riding his mobility scooter through King’s Park in Retford, when the tree fell.

Police were called to the scene at about 1.50pm on Thursday 5 December.

An ambulance attended but Mr White was pronounced dead at the scene.

The park has been closed until further notice.

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