More than 40 emergency weather related calls overnight

More than 40 emergency calls were received for Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service during thunder storms last night.

Thames Valley Fire Control Service received the high volume of calls from around 8.30pm to 11.45pm during the heavy rain, thunder and lightning on Tuesday 18 July.

Firefighters from around the County attended a number of incidents related to the weather issues as well as incidents they more routinely deal with.

Some of the most notable calls crews went to include:

At 9.15pm, Thames Valley Fire Control Service (TVFCS) received reports of a house on Oregon Avenue, Tilehurst, being struck by lightning.

Firefighters from Dee Road and Wokingham Road were sent to the scene.

The lightning strike had caused a fire in the loft of the house. Two firefighters in breathing apparatus used one hose reel to extinguish the fire. South Central Ambulance Service also attended the incident.

At 9.26pm, two crews from Maidenhead Fire Station were called to a college on Burchetts Green Road, Burchetts Green, following reports of flooding into two buildings.

Firefighters found flooding in a four-storey building and a two-storey building along with a collapsed ceiling in one of the buildings.

The crews carried out salvage work to move a number of items to a dry area to preserve them. They were on the scene for around an hour.

At 9.37pm, crews from Caversham Road, Ascot and Bracknell fire stations were called to a lightning strike at a school on Sonning Lane, Sonning.

An alarm was sounding but firefighters discovered no signs of fire when they arrived.

At 9.52pm on Tuesday 18 July, Thames Valley Fire Control Service received reports that a garage was on fire at a property on Millbank Crescent, Woodley.

Firefighters from Wokingham and Slough fire stations responded to the call and found that a garage measuring 6m by 3m was well alight.

Four firefighters wearing breathing apparatus tackled the blaze using two hose reels. Once the fire was out, the crews used a thermal imaging camera to check for any areas that might still be burning to ensure the fire was entirely out.

At 10.06pm, firefighters from Crowthorne Fire Station went to flooding at a unit on an industrial estate on Basingstoke Road, Spencers Wood.

Crews went to make the scene safe because the flooding was affecting the electricity supply to the building.

At 10.30pm, a crew from Maidenhead went to Burchetts Green Road, Burchetts Green, because a driver was stranded in a flood section of the road.

Firefighters pushed the car to safety and offered advice to the driver.

At 10.50pm, firefighters from Windsor were called to a fallen tree on Drift Road, Winkfield, Windsor.

The crew ensured that the scene was safe and handed over to Thames Valley Police.

Following the overnight call outs, there are steps that residents can take:

  • Do not drive through flood water – drivers are still taking enormous risks.
  • Manholes may be dangerous – during flooding, it is difficult to see what is underneath the water but the rain can add pressure underneath the man holes.
  • Ensure good ventilation if using portable indoor heating appliances to dry out indoor spaces – do not use petrol or diesel generators or other similar fuel-driven equipment indoors: the exhaust gases contain carbon monoxide which can kill.
  • Do not turn on gas or electrics if they have got wet – only turn them on when they have been checked by a qualified technician.
  • Do not move or ignore road closures signs – they are there for your safety, so please do not ignore them.