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Whitehawk hit by flash floods
A Brighton newsagent had to batten down the hatches after a deluge of water caused by a torrential downpour threatened to engulf his business.
Rivers of rainwater poured down three roads and converged on a Whitehawk shopping parade leading to knee-deep water on Monday afternoon.
Despite reinforced shutters and a raised front-step, Best-One convenience store on Whitehawk Road, experienced “tsunami” waves running into the shop as buses ploughed through a four-foot “duck pond” of water.
Store owner Vijey Thiva said: “It’s an ongoing problem. When we first took over three years ago we didn’t realise the flood risk.
“I’ve moved the door and raised the step to avoid the problem.
“When the rain came down we closed up and put the shutters up but the water still came in all the way through to the back of the store.
“It doesn’t stay for long but it’s a hell of a lot of work to clear up.
“Every time a bus goes past a wave of water breaks through the shutters. It was up to knee-level. It causes some stock damage but we’re prepared for it now.
“The first time it happened we had huge stock damage.”
Chris Doevy, who took pictures of the flooding, said: “I’ve never seen anything like it in Brighton it was crazy. It was all gone after 20 or 30 minutes.”
Paul Hobdelle, of Pack of Cards, Arundel Road, said: “I’ve been here 17 years and this is probably the fifth time floods like this have happened.
“If there’s a downpour it runs down in rivers and turns into a pond.
“It was about four-foot up the door and when the buses drive through at 30mph it creates a tsunami.
“The area isn’t far above sea level. I bet it used to be a duck pond.”
Helen Montague, manager of The Offie, Whitehawk Road, said: “The staff were getting a bit worried as the water was getting very close to the top of the step.
“It happens every time there’s a downpour, it runs off down three different roads.”
The Met Office said 6.8mm of rain fell in Brighton on Monday.
A spokeswoman said: “It’s not an incredible amount but if it falls in a short space of time it can have a big impact locally.”
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