COMMUNITIES in the South East are being urged to remain aware of the potential for more river, coastal and groundwater flooding over the weekend with further heavy rainfall predicted to fall this afternoon.

The warning comes as high spring tides are also forecast along the south coast today and over the weekend, which could result in flood alerts and possibly some flood warnings.

There are currently seven flood warnings and 102 flood alerts in force for the South East. A flood warning means that flooding of property is expected and that people should take action to prepare.

High groundwater levels mean there is a continued risk of flooding in many areas such as south Wiltshire, Hampshire, West Berkshire, West Sussex, Surrey and Kent. Flood alerts for groundwater flooding are in force currently across the South East and the forecast is for levels to continue to rise in the days ahead.

People are urged to avoid driving or walking through flood water. Fast-flowing water that is just 15cm deep can be enough to knock an adult off their feet.

Dave Bedlington, regional flood risk manager for the Environment Agency, said: “We are expecting further heavy rainfall today and into the weekend, which will continue to raise the threat of flooding to communities along rivers and along the south east coast, and we already have several flood warnings in force in Hampshire, East Sussex and Kent.

“We will continue to monitoring the situation very closely as river and groundwater levels across the South East remain high and responsive, and standing water remains in some flood plains. As high spring tides are also forecast over the weekend we will be keeping a close eye on the developing situation around the coast.

“Environment Agency teams remain out on the ground around the clock operating pumping stations, issuing flood warnings and checking that flood banks, walls and barriers are working effectively. We are urging communities to prepare in advance by signing up for free flood warnings and to take action if they receive one. A flood warning indicates that flooding is expected and immediate action is required.”

Advice for those dealing with flooding is available on the Environment Agency website and from Floodline on 0845 988 1188. Up-to-date information is available on Twitter @EnvAgencySE and by following #floodaware.