Flash Flood
Reprinted from the BBC (world news without the spin)

Original Version for Printing

   What is amazing is first, the forecasters did not know that the flash floods occurred until reports first came out of the town. Second, how could 2 to 3 inches (reprint of story) of rain create a wall of water 10 to 15 feet high yet the surrounding areas are left with no serious problems. Third, why was the term not out of the ordinary used when the rushing water exceeded the maximum historical flood levels by 10 feet. Here the pictures tell a tale of a super storm, which dropped an unprecedented amount of rain in a short time interval. A total the world will never know, but one can see its aftermath. 


 A Glimpse of Destruction

More Destruction

Rescuer describes Boscastle ordeal

Andrew Cameron, 27, is a crew member of the Port Isaac lifeboat, and was one of the first rescuers to reach the scene of the flash floods in the Cornish village of Boscastle.

Mr Cameron runs a surfing company, but he is also a volunteer lifeguard and lifeboat man.

We got a call at four o'clock. The maroon went up, it's a big bang in the village. Two of those bangs have to go off - one for coastguard, two for lifeboats. So we rushed to the lifeboat station as quickly as possible.

Together with two more volunteers, Damien Bolton and Nigel Sherat, we took out a boat. It's a 20-minute trip from Port Isaac to Boscastle.

The rain was so heavy you couldn't see right in front of you

We were the first lifeboat on the scene and were greeted by a 10-15 foot wall of water coming down the town, out of the harbour and pushing 30, maybe 50 cars in front of it.

There were cars all around us at sea, there was debris everywhere, the air was thick with the stench of fuel.

Then another storm came in as we arrived, so lightning was hitting all around us in a big thunderstorm.

'Like a war zone'

There were about seven helicopters in the air. We were checking all the cars for people. It was such an intense situation, no one really knew what was happening.

It's an amazing, horrible, scary situation for people in the village

Unfortunately a few pets trapped in the cars drowned. We couldn't save them because our priority is to save people.

It was a very difficult situation because of the thickness of the fuel on the water and the storm itself - the rain was so heavy you couldn't see right in front of you.

It was somewhat surreal, it was a bit like a war zone, with all these cars floating around.

Most of the cars had been pushed directly down through the village from the main car park, so we were checking, breaking the back of the cars in search for people, but most of them had actually got out before the cars were flushed down, but at the time we didn't realise that. It was such a hectic situation.

We were probably at sea for about three to four hours. People were very thankful, but we were only doing our job.

I think it was a one-off surreal experience. It's an amazing, horrible, scary situation for people in the village.

link:  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/3577714.stm


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