Homes have been evacuated in Northern England and Wales and transport disrupted after storm Christoph caused severe flooding.
On Thursday morning, there were 187 flood warnings in force in England, including five severe warnings, meaning severe flooding and danger to life. There were also 214 flood alerts. The Environment Agency said it had removed 67 flood warnings in the last 24 hours, indicating a rapidly changing situation.
The BBC reported that about 2,000 homes in the Didsbury and Northenden areas of Manchester, and in Ruthin and Bangor-on-Dee, North Wales and Maghull, Merseyside were affected.
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said its crews and officers from across the city region had been working throughout the night to support residents affected by Storm Christoph.
It said that between 5pm on Wednesday (20 January) and 6am Thursday it received 121 calls and attended 84 incidents, including a number of localised flooding incidents.
On Thursday morning Transport for Greater Manchester said there was disruption to bus services and that widespread disruption was expected across the rail network, although Metrolink trams were running normally.
Rail firm Northern advised passengers across much of the north west of England not to travel before midday on Thursday ‘due to increasingly poor conditions following torrential rain across the region’.
It said routes covering north of Manchester, Lancashire and Cumbria were affected by the ‘Do Not Travel’ alert, adding: ‘A number of routes have experienced issues with flooding, and several have seen closures and significant disruption.’
Northern said many routes from south of Manchester were still currently expected to run, with some exceptions.
TfGM reported that a number of roads in the area had closed, with Stockport Council having closed both the eastbound and westbound carriageway of the A555 from the Bramhall Oil Terminal to Styal Road ‘due to persistent rainfall’.
On Wednesday the Local Government Association said councils in affected regions had been co-ordinating with emergency service crews, the Environment Agency and other neighbouring councils 'to ensure that help is at hand should the forecast severe weather bring with it property damage and disruption to the roads and local services'.