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Clean-up after the flash floods left Hayle under water

Clean-up after the flash floods left Hayle under water

Published by Emma Carton at 8:09am 20th December 2019. (Updated at 8:12am 20th December 2019)

Residents, cleaning up after the flash floods in Cornwall, say they have never Hayle flood like it did.

Police declared a major incident as parts of the town ended up knee deep in water.

The torrents streamed into shops and businesses on the main street, along with mud and debris.

At one point, the flooding was so bad several streets and the A30 bypass had to be closed.

"I've never seen Hayle flood like it did today, ever".

flooding in hayle
Residents, cleaning up after the flash flooding in Hayle, say they have never seen anything like it. Photo: Ken Whalley

Speaking to ITV News Westcountry, hair salon staff described the scale of the floods as unprecedented.

"I've lived in Hayle all my life and I've never seen Hayle flood like it did today, ever".

"It just kept getting worse and worse until it poured in the salon and worked its way into the back and completely flooded us out".

Caroline Savage

Postmaster of 14 years, Simon Coles, told ITV News Westcountry the mud and debris also did its worst.

"All of a sudden the water seemed to get more and more and more and piled through into the shop and that was the end of that really.

"The door's been smashed with things being hit against it with the traffic moving up and down just creating tidal waves".

Simon Coles

flooding in hayle
The flooding was so bad that at one point, parts of the main street in Hayle were under water. Photo: St Ives Community Fire Station

Firefighters from several towns in the west of Cornwall spend several hours pumping the flood waters away.

As the torrents subsided, residents and businesses were left trying to sweep away the mud and assess the damage.

Many will spend the next couple of days trying to get things sorted so they can reopen before Christmas - their busiest time.

The flood warning for Hayle has been lifted, but the Environment Agency and Met Office say more is possible as more rain looms.

You can check the latest flood alerts and weather warnings for Cornwall here.

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