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London flooding - live: Climate emergency ‘on our doorstep’, warns Khan after torrential downpour in capital

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The impact of the climate emergency is on “our doorstep”, Sadiq Khan warned after London experienced more flash floods.

The torrential rainfall caused road disruption and Tube closures on Tuesday.

More than an inch of rain fell in one hour in some parts of the city overnight, with St James’s Park among the worst-affected areas. It saw a total of 26mm in just sixty minutes, according to the Met Office.

“Once again, we’re seeing the impact of the climate emergency on our doorstep. In London we’re leading from the front to tackle this crisis, and I’ll continue to urge other politicians here and around the world to take the action that’s desperately needed,” the mayor of London said.

As a result of the downpour, Transport for London (TfL) has confirmed that there are “severe” delays on some Underground lines.

Above ground, floodwater hit tourist hotspots such as Knightsbridge, with firefighters in attendance to unblock a drain there.

Elsewhere, there is no service between Willesden Junction and Clapham Junction due to flooding at Imperial Wharf.

Meanwhile, a whole lane on the A4 near the Hammersmith Flyover in west London has been submerged.

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Key Points

  • ‘We’re seeing the impact of the climate emergency on our doorstep,’ says Sadiq Khan

  • London flooding causes Tube closures

  • London’s A4 severely flooded after torrential downpour

  • Rain warning issued for northern England and southern Scotland

  • London flooding in photos and videos

22:16 , Andy Gregory

That’s us closing the liveblog for this evening – thanks for following along with us.

You can find all of The Independent’s latest articles on climate here.

Or else keep scrolling to read about the day’s events, as we reported them.

09:57 , Rory Sullivan

Good morning, and welcome to our coverage of the latest flash flooding to hit London.

London flooding causes Tube closures

10:00 , Rory Sullivan

There were “severe delays” on certain Tube lines on Tuesday morning as a result of heavy rainfall overnight, Transport for London (TfL) said.

The District, Piccadilly, Circle, and Hammersmith and City Lines were all affected by the flooding.

My colleague Thomas Kingsley reports:

London flooding hits roads and causes Tube closures

Knightsbridge flooding

10:16 , Rory Sullivan

Tourist hotspot Knightsbridge saw torrential rainfall overnight, with footage on Tuesday morning showing cars driving along a heavily flooded road.

Here’s the BBC’s Greg McKenzie with a clip from the area:

Overnight rainfall figures

10:30 , Rory Sullivan

Travellers should take “extra care” when travelling, the Met Office has said.

The warning comes as the weather agency published overnight rainfall figures, with St James’s Park experiencing 35mm of precipitation between midnight and 6am on Tuesday.

Video: Rain water leaks into Westminster flat

10:40 , Rory Sullivan

One unlucky Londoner’s flat in Westminster was flooded after the downpour overnight.

A video shows rain water streaming down through their bathroom ceiling:

London’s A4 severely flooded after torrential downpour

11:00 , Rory Sullivan

Watch: London’s A4 severely flooded after torrential downpour

Motorway closures

11:15 , Rory Sullivan

It is not just London that has experienced travel disruption because of the torrential rain.

Parts of the M23 near Crawley are closed due to flooding.

London flooding: Most dramatic photos and videos

11:30 , Rory Sullivan

London was hit by floods shortly after the Met Office issued a yellow rain warning for London and the south east on Monday night.

Writing for indy100, Elaine McCallig has compiled some of the most dramatic videos and pictures from the capital.

London flooding: The most dramatic pictures and videos as commuters left stranded

Rain warning issued for northern England and southern Scotland

11:45 , Rory Sullivan

The Met Office has issued a yellow rain warning for parts of north-east England and south-east Scotland.

Heavy and persistent rain could cause travel disruptions there between 2am and 10pm today.

Sadiq Khan: ‘We’re seeing the impact of the climate emergency on our doorstep’

12:00 , Rory Sullivan

In response to the scenes in the capital, Sadiq Khan has said that Londoners are witnessing the “impact of the climate emergency” on their “doorstep”.

The London mayor said Transport for London (TfL) was working hard with local councils to return travel services and roads to normal.

“Once again, we’re seeing the impact of the climate emergency on our doorstep. In London we’re leading from the front to tackle this crisis, and I’ll continue to urge other politicians here and around the world to take the action that’s desperately needed,” he added.

Parts of England could see 50mm of rain on Tuesday, warns Met Office

12:20 , Rory Sullivan

Areas in the north-east of England could experience as much as 50mm of rain today, the Met Office has warned.

These levels are higher than the rainfall seen overnight in London, which led to flash floods.

Meteorologist Grahame Madge told the PA news agency: “The rainfall is subsiding for much of the country now, but the low pressure system is going out into north-east England and south-east Scotland.

“It will still be a bit showery elsewhere, but the main downpours are converging over the north-east.”

More flooding photos

12:35 , Rory Sullivan

Fire at Westminster Tube station

12:55 , Rory Sullivan

Turning away from flooding news momentarily, a fire has broken out at Westminster Tube station.

“Six fire engines and around 40 firefighters are at the scene of a fire at Westminster Station on Bridge Street in Westminster,” the London Fire Brigade (LFB) said.

Lamiat Sabin has this breaking story:

Westminster: Firefighters attend blaze at London underground station

Latest weather update

13:20 , Rory Sullivan

Here’s the latest weather forecast from the Met Office:

LFB pumps water out of flooded premises

13:43 , Rory Sullivan

The London Fire Brigade is helping to pump floodwater out of premises in Westminster, the local council has confirmed.

Earlier on Tuesday, Westminster Council said that city inspectors were assessing the damage to properties in parts of Knightsbridge, Bourne Terrace (W2), Oak Tree and Abbey Road (NW8).

Met Office issues rain warning for west Scotland on Thursday

14:00 , Rory Sullivan

Up to 150mm of rain could fall in a single day in some areas of western Scotland later this week, the Met Office has said.

This is considerably more rain than the levels seen in London overnight.

As a result, the agency issued a yellow weather warning from Glasgow up to Fort William between midnight and 3pm on Thursday.

Flood warnings in place across UK

14:17 , Rory Sullivan

Two flood warnings are in place as well as dozens of flood alerts, the Environment Agency has said.

Flooding is expected in an area of Keswick in the Lake District as well as by sections of the River Anker near Birmingham.

Meanwhile, more flooding is possible in regions such as London, the south-west and the Midlands.

Flooding in northern England could last into Wednesday

14:36 , Rory Sullivan

Flooding in the north of England could last into Wednesday, the Environment Agency has said.

Katherine Smith, flood duty manager at the public body, said: “Working with our partners in local resilience forums, Environment Agency teams have been out on the ground clearing waste grilles and screens, and stand ready to operate flood defences if needed.

“They are also ready to support local authorities in their response to surface water flooding.”

Scottish and Welsh agencies have also issued flood alerts for Edinburgh and the Lothians, the Scottish Borders and parts of the north Wales coast.

Video: Knightsbridge flooding

15:00 , Rory Sullivan

Here’s more about this morning’s flooding in Knightsbridge, central London.

The Evening Standard’s Michael Howie took this clip on his commute to work:

Wetland centre in Tyne and Wear closes due to flooding

15:22 , Rory Sullivan

The Washington Wetland Centre, a nature reserve in Tyne and Wear, has closed temporarily due to on-site flooding.

Staff at the wildlife site thanked the public for their concern, adding that all its otters and birds are safe.

London floods: ‘Exactly what we expect’ in climate crisis, says hydrologist

15:45 , Rory Sullivan

The flooding seen in London is “exactly what we expect” as global temperatures rise, a leading hydrologist has said.

Hannah Cloke, a hydrologist at the University of Reading, said the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, was right to suggest that “everyone...is potentially in the firing line of climate extremes”.

“This kind of flooding is exactly what we expect to see more of as the climate warms up. Heavier rainfall from slower-moving weather systems are likely to be one of the causes of more surface water floods due to climate change,” she added.

The hydrologist also said that the government, local authorities, business and individuals need to make infrastructure and homes “more resilient” to future flooding.

Dangers of climate change now ‘closer to home’, says mayor of London’s office

16:00 , Rory Sullivan

Responding to the London floods, a spokesperson for Sadiq Khan has warned that the dangers of climate change are moving “closer to home”.

They said: “Flash flooding in some areas of London last night is causing concern and anxiety for many Londoners and it shows once again that the dangers of climate change have moved closer to home.

“It remains a key priority for the mayor and London’s council leaders that more is urgently done to tackle the risk of surface water flooding and the other impacts of the climate crisis.”

16:48 , Andy Gregory

Here’s the spread of flood alerts and warnings in England currently issued by the Environment Agency.

 (Environment Agency screengrab)
(Environment Agency screengrab)

There are just two warnings, meaning flooding is expected – at Keswick Campsite and near Atherstone in Warwickshire.

However there are 44 alerts scattered across the country, meaning the public are advised to be prepared for possible flooding.

17:45 , Andy Gregory

Here’s a few weather updates from the Met Office for what to expect over the next few hours.

They forecast heavy rain and a risk of thunder over parts of Country Durham and the Vale of York, advising care if travelling.

However, in most parts of England, the rain is set to subside tonight.

But these clearer skies could see temperatures drop into single figures.

Heavy rain set to hit north of England after London flash floods

18:25 , Andy Gregory

My colleague Furvah Shah has this round-up of the latest weather news today.

Within her article, meteorologist Grahame Madge is quoted as saying: “The rainfall is subsiding for much of the country now, but the low pressure system is going out into north-east England and south-east Scotland.

“It will still be a bit showery elsewhere, but the main downpours are converging over the north east.”

UK weather: Heavy rain set to hit north of England after London flash floods

London Tube closures due to flooding hit record levels this year, Green Party says

19:24 , Andy Gregory

The chair of City Hall’s environment committee Zach Polanski has highlighted Green Party research, reported by the Evening Standard today, which suggests that flooding has led to a record 141 hours of Tube closures this year – before recent flooding was taken into account.

In data published last month, Mr Polanski found there had been 38 incidents this year affecting 30 different stations.

Transport for London’s annual report in August had suggested it “does not have a full assessment of the number or impact of weather events on the tube and other vital London transport services”, he added.

“It’s a problem that is getting worse,” the Green London Assembly member said today.

‘Lingering cloud and rain’ to clear, Met Office says, amid small increase in flood warnings

21:54 , Andy Gregory

Some good news from the Met Office, suggesting that any “lingering cloud and rain in the far east” will soon clear tomorrow.

However the number of flood warnings has slightly risen since our last update, with 48 alerts (meaning flooding is possible) and four warnings of expected flooding.

The warnings remain in Keswick Campsite and near Atherstone, with two new warnings found near Hornsea and the River Greta.

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