A FAMILY had to flee their home after flooding threatened to leave them stranded.

Heavy rain resulted in surface water flooding some roads, and ditches were unable to cope in some areas.

Gina Smith, of Cold Norton Road, Latchingdon, woke up at 7am last Thursday to find her house had flooded.

She said there was no warning from the Environment Agency flood alert system.

The power supply to the house’s electric gates was knocked out, and water levels in the bungalow rose up to 11 inches.

With a carer for her 30-year-old disabled daughter unable to get in and water coming up through the floor and plumbing, they had to leave and go to the Travelodge in Maldon.

She said: “We received no notification of this. We called Maldon District Council’s emergency helpline and it rang once then cut us off.

“We called 999 and they told us to evacuate.

“I managed to get some rooms in the Maldon Travelodge, then had to find ways of getting everyone safely out.”

Maldon and Burnham Standard: Flooding outside Gina Smith's house in Latchingdon. Photo by Gina Smith 2

Gina had to hurriedly escape the house with her two daughters, two carers, her husband, two grandchildren, and two teagle dogs.

“Our cat, our snakes, and our bearded dragon are still in the house,” she said.

“We’ve lost our pond full of goldfish. We’ve called a kennel to take the two dogs. If the Travelodge had not had an adapted room free, I don’t know what we would have done, and if this continues, I don’t know what we will do.

“Six years ago, when this nearly happened, the council delivered sandbags in advance and had set up Plume Academy to evacuate to but they’re not even answering phones until after 10am. All the emergency agencies are telling us is we need to speak to our council, but where are they?”

Gina is worried their 200-year-old piano – a family heirloom – will be irreparably damaged by the flooding.

Maldon District Council said it had received a large amount of flooding calls and responded to incidents.

A spokesman said: “The council has been dealing with a large number of flooding calls due to the heavy rain last night, which resulted in surface water flooding to some roads and with ditches becoming over-topped in some areas.

“Our response team have been quick to act and ready to open two rest centres should this become necessary.

Maldon and Burnham Standard: Crews from Maldon District Council helping with a flooding incident in crew in Katonia Avenue, MaylandCrews from Maldon District Council helping with a flooding incident in crew in Katonia Avenue, Mayland

“We have been prioritising support for the vulnerable and supporting others where we have had the capacity to do so.

“However, it is the responsibility of residents to protect their property from flooding, and we would urge residents to make sure that they know what to do and how to report flooding issues when they occur. Our website and social media channels always provide useful information when such incidents occur.”