Wiltshire volunteers were scrambled to rescue elderly people after flash flooding.
Emergency services were called to Primrose Hill Residential Park in Charlton Adam, Somerset, yesterday evening (Monday) after water engulfed dozens of static caravans.
Wiltshire Search and Rescue, working alongside police, the fire service and several other search and rescue charities, checked on approximately 100 people living on the site.
The water level was recorded at five-foot-deep in some areas, with many homes flooded. Other properties had lost electricity and water supply.
A number of residents needed to be extricated to dry land – alongside their pets – for further care and assistance late on Monday and into the early hours of this morning (Tuesday).
A spokesperson for Wiltshire Search and Rescue said: “On arrival, we were briefed about an emerging issue at a caravan park, with flood water up to 5’ deep in places, and the welfare of around 100 residents was unknown.
“Some of the caravans were flooded, and others had lost electricity or water supplies.
“The five teams deployed and worked alongside the fire service to locate, assess, and where required extricate the mainly elderly residents and pets in boats.
“Once back on dry land they were checked over by paramedics at a casualty collection point and then taken to a place of safety.
“We train to the same flood rescue standards as all the emergency services in the UK.
“The importance of this was massively apparent last night; despite having never previously met the vast majority of those involved before, we were able to work together seamlessly, confidently and efficiently.”
Involved in the rescue was two flood teams who were rapidly formed consisting of Lowland Rescue volunteers from Wiltshire, Dorset and Hampshire, who were initially sent to a holding area at Yeovil police station.
There they joined up with Mountain Rescue colleagues from Exmoor Search and Rescue who had also been tasked.
Witnesses said the flood peaked overnight at waist height for residents and with the only way out blocked, there was no option other than to use the boats.
Aerial footage taken this morning showed much of the site still underwater – with an estimated 30 caravans impacted.
A woman, who turned up to try to help her elderly relatives living on the site, said that police stopped her from accessing the area.
“When I turned up last night my mum and dad were so distressed, really scared.
“But the police had closed the road and it was too dangerous to get closer. They said they had the situation under control.
“We came back at 8am and spoke to some workers, they said everyone was accounted for and helped us get access to check in with them and they were okay thank God.”
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