A £12.5 million repair bill to fix Surrey’s flood-affected roads and bridges is just the tip of the iceberg, according to the county council’s highways chief.
A major clear-up of the 2,500 worst-affected roads is underway after devastating flooding twice hit the county over Christmas and again this month.
Over Christmas, heavy storms and burst riverbanks, including the Mole and the Wey, prompted county council teams to tackle hundreds of flooded roads, plus fallen trees and damaged bridges.
This month the emergency services, councils, the Environment Agency and the Army helped thousands of people affected by River Thames flooding, including more than 1,000 people rescued by Surrey firefighters.
Before the latest flooding began on 9 February, council roads inspectors assessing damage across the county gave early estimates that the clear-up would cost around £5m. This has now gone up to £12.5m, with around £800,000 alone expected to be needed to rebuild Flanchford Road bridge near Reigate. The council has bid for government funding to help repair six miles of A and B-roads, plus 39 bridges.
John Furey, Surrey county council’s cabinet member for highways, said: “The water levels from February’s flooding have only just begun to drop in Surrey, so the £12.5m repair bill from the damage over Christmas is just the tip of the iceberg.
“We’ll do everything we can to put things right for the residents of Surrey, but this extra financial burden is huge so we hope our bids for government funding are successful.”