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The 2007 U.K. floods led to Britain's biggest peacetime rescue efforts

Thursday, June 10th 2021, 6:11 am - On this day in weather history, areas of the United Kingdom were flooded.

Listen to The Weather Network's This Day in Weather History podcast on this topic, here.

This Day In Weather History is a daily podcast by The Weather Network that features stories about people, communities, and events and how weather impacted them.


In the summer of 2007, the United Kingdom faced extreme flooding. June of that year was one of the rainiest in British history. Britain received 140 mm of rain that June, more than double the monthly average. Some places received all of June's average rain in just 24 hours.

The precipitation didn't stop in June; it was Britain's rainiest May–July since 1776 when record-keeping began. June and July were the most challenging of the months as they were described as the country's biggest peacetime rescue efforts.

Severn flood 2007 Interview with ITV (central) "Upton-upon-Severn flooded Interview with ITV (central) King's Head pub television interview 2007 United Kingdom floods Interview with ITV (central)." Courtesy of Iain Cuthbertson/Wikipedia/CC BY-SA 2.0

Climate experts attribute the unusual weather that caused the extreme flooding to the year's La Nina in the Pacific Ocean and a jet stream that was more southern than usual.

England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales were all impacted by the heavy rains and floods. The flooding also triggered landslides around England and Northern Ireland.

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More than 55,000 homes and 6,000 businesses were flooded. There were 13 flood-related deaths.

The floods also caused extensive crop damage, including to areas farming broccoli, carrots, peas, and potatoes. Some areas in Lincolnshire lost around 40 per cent of their pea crop to floods.

Meadowhall road flooded A road near Meadowhall Centre showing extensive flooding after the River Don burst its banks. Courtesy of Duffman69/Wikipedia/CC BY-SA 3.0

According to the Environment Agency, "the scale and seriousness of the summer 2007 floods were sufficient to classify them as a national disaster." And the "total economic costs of the summer 2007 floods are estimated at about £3.2 billion in 2007 prices, within a possible range of between £2.5 billion and £3.8 billion."

To learn more about the 2007 U.K. floods, listen to today's episode of "This Day In Weather History."

This Day In Weather History is a daily podcast by The Weather Network that features unique and informative stories from host Chris Mei.

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Thumbnail: Bridge collapse in Ludlow. Courtesy of DI Wyman/Wikipedia/CC BY-SA 2.0

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