London Fire Brigade was called to a large number of flash flooding and lightning strike calls across London, with a large number of the calls coming from south east London, particularly around the Croydon area, which was badly affected by storms between 14.30-15.00.
The most significant incident was three cars flooded to the depth of two metres on Manor Road in Wallington. Two people were assisted from their cars before the arrival of the Brigade, and a third person was rescued by firefighters. The Brigade was called at 1421 and the incident was under control by 1450.
The Brigade received up to 200 flood-related 999 calls and has attended a number of incidents thought to be caused by lightning, including trees, hoarding and telegraph poles alight. Between 14.30-3.30 the Brigade received roughly three times as many 999 calls as it would normally.
A Brigade spokesperson said: "Our 999 control officers have been extremely busy this afternoon taking calls to storm-related incidents across the capital. Firefighters are attending a number of incidents, mainly due to flooding. Crews rescued someone from a car that was almost completely submerged by floodwater in Wallington."
The Brigade has a range of equipment which can be used to help rescue people trapped by flood water, pump water away and protect properties. Some of the Brigade's fire rescue units are equipped with water rescue equipment such as inflatable rescue boats. The Brigade also has a number of high volume pumps stationed at strategic locations across the capital. These can be used to pump large amounts of water away from flooded areas.