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Phone lines down in Chester area after flood at exchange

Phone services in Chester have been hit by a fault caused when a BT exchange flooded.

The Countess of Chester and Cheshire Police have both reported problems.

Residential and business services have also been affected.

BT says it hopes to have the repairs carried out by 5pm.

"Police are advising local residents in the affected areas to use a mobile phone if they need to make contact via 999 in an emergency, or to speak with the police on the non emergency 101 number.

"Additional patrols will be visible in the impacted areas."

– Cheshire Police


Tribute to 'charitable, caring man' who died after being hit by a car

The family of 88-year-old man who died after being hit by a car, have paid tribute to him.

Mervyn Bruce Taylor died in hospital on Monday, 10 November, after being knocked down by a car in Barnston on the Wirral five days earlier.

Mervyn Brown Credit: Merseyside Police

Mervyn's daughter, Melissa, said:

"My dad lived life to the full. He was a very independent, strong willed and active man and was very fit for his age.

"If he wanted something in life or mum wanted anything he would work very hard to achieve it, in fact he worked that hard in life that he forgot to retire and was still working as an accountant at the age of 88.

"Dad was a very charitable man and received recognition for his services to charity when both he and mum received a royal invite to a garden party at Buckingham Palace.

"He was a very caring man and in 2003 when mum suffered a stroke, he devoted the next eight years caring for her so she didn’t have to go into a home.

"Everything he did was for other people.”

– Melissa, Mervyn's daughter

Police recover five flasks of toxic chemical

Merseyside Police say they've recovered five flasks of a highly toxic chemical, stolen in a burglary at a business in Wirral.

The chemical 'Phostoxin' is highly flammable and toxic, and is used as a pesticide.

The flasks were found at Bebington Cemetery after apparently being left there.

Merseyside Police said:

Officers from the Matrix Serious and Organised Crime Team today have conducted a further search of the area.

One canister remains outstanding.

Police are urging anyone who has any information or knows of the whereabouts of the sixth canister to find a way of returning it to either the police or the fire service.

– Merseyside Police

Highly toxic chemicals stolen - police issue warning

Police in Wirral are warning the public following a large quantity of highly toxic chemicals were taken in burglary at business premises on Old Hall Road in Bromborough, Wirral at some time between yesterday evening and this morning

A safe was taken in this burglary, which contained the chemical ‘Phostoxin’, which is used as a pesticide. This chemical is harmful is highly flammable and emits a highly toxic gas when in contact with water.

I don’t believe the thieves who were involved in this burglary are aware of what they’ve taken. I’d like to appeal to them, for their own safety and the safety of others, to find a way of returning these chemicals to either the police or the fire service.

– Inspector Paul Harrison, Merseyside Police


Inquest told of "explosion" before crash

Pte Michael Peers, who was in the Ridgeback when it turned over and fell into the canal, described to the inquest how he managed to escape from the submerged vehicle and make his way to safety as he was on the brink of unconsciousness.

In a statement read to the hearing, he said the vehicle was travelling at speed, leaving the following Ridgeback to trail behind at some distance, as it responded to the call for help from the ANP at CP5. He said that the crew were all wearing their seatbelts and had opened the hatches as they travelled close to the canal.

He said: "I heard a loud bang which was like an explosion, I do not know where it came from or where it impacted if it did impact.

"I felt the vehicle jolt and I thought it might be an IED. I felt the vehicle swerve then flip over on to its right hand side.

"The whole event lasted a couple of seconds or less. The vehicle then fell over on to its left side and submerged in the water, I didn't have time to take a breath.

"I managed to stand up and pushed out on the walls and found an opening, I managed to pull myself through the opening. I cannot expand on any further details because of the shock and confusion."

He said the weight of his body armour caused him to sink below the surface of the water. "I couldn't remove my body armour and in my last moment of consciousness I managed to kick my legs."

He was then helped from the water by members of the ANP. He added: "I started to cough up lots of water."

He said it took about 45 minutes to retrieve the vehicle from the water which involved the other Ridgeback using a tow rope to pull it out.

Pte Peers said that he then saw the bodies of Pte Isaac then L/Cpl Ramsden being brought out of the vehicle. He said: "I was in shock, I smoked about 20 cigarettes to calm down."

And he added: "I do not know what may have caused the accident but I did see extensive damage to the front of the Ridgeback."

The inquest, which is due to last six days, was adjourned until tomorrow.

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