Boats battered, homes evacuated, and Garda feared dead in floods

Torrential rain over the last 24 hours has brought misery to much of the UK and Ireland.

Cornwall experienced flooding for the second time in 12 months, while in
Devon, the seafront at Torquay was closed off. The day before, as the
weather was building, four young men were rescued by Exmouth RNLI from
their upturned RIB. With huge waves breaking over the 7m vessel the
casualties were forced to swim one by one to the lifeboat, and
conditions were too dangerous to retrieve the RIB.

In Ireland, Dublin was deluged by 100mm of rain – the normal average for the whole month – causing flash flooding. As dozens of people were rescued from their homes and businesses, many by boat, off-duty police officer Ciaran Jones, who had been helping in the effort, was swept away in the upper River Liffey. This morning a sub-aqua team is due to retrieve a body, found close to where the 25-year-old disappeared.

And in the Channel Islands, sailing boats in Guernsey were torn from their moorings. Two ended up beached at Belle Greve Bay, and were expected to break up overnight. With more dangerous weather expected, the St Peter Port harbour master Captain Peter Gill has warned all boat owners to check their moorings.

The weather front is moving slowly north and east with severe weather warnings still in place for Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland. Water levels continue to rise from the rain that has already fallen, and flood warnings remain in place in the north-east and south-west of Britain, with more possible.

Exmouth seafront just before heavy rain
Liz Moon via Creative Commons