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Torrential rain and floods cause major disruption in Britain and Ireland


Staff writers
June 29, 2012 — A series of intense thunderstorms brought exceptionally harsh weather to some parts of the United Kingdom Wednesday and Thursday -- causing major flash flooding and disturbances in many places.


Northern England, the Midlands, Scotland and Northern Ireland were worst hit by storms that brought lightning
Northern England, the Midlands, Scotland and Northern Ireland were worst hit by storms that brought lightning

Heavy rain and flash flooding across Britain and Ireland have resulted in inundated homes and submerged roads, as well as cutting off both main railway lines linking England and Scotland. Network Rail said sections of the Glasgow-to-London and the Edinburgh-to-London lines were blocked by landslides Thursday. 

Rainfall totals were recorded at just under 30 mm in less than an hour. Several other sites saw totals in excess of 20 mm per hour. SOme reports say there were more than 111,000 lighting strokes detected across Europe, with more than 1,000 detected over the UK in a 5-minute time span. 

On Thursday, one man was reported dead after being swept away by a flooded Shropshire stream, while roads were closed ad hundreds of homes evacuated. 

In Belfast, floodwater swamped houses and left about 1,000 homes without power late Wednesday. The Environment Agency imposed 12 flood warnings and 62 alerts across the country Thursday.

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