Water overflowing from the River Thames floods a house at Wraysbury, England, on February 10, 2014.The River Thames has breached its banks after reaching its highest point in years, flooding areas upstream of London and putting thousands of people at risk.
Residents and soldiers from the army stacked sandbags to shield properties from the swollen river, but it burst their defenses in several places on Monday and wreaked havoc.
Residents in a village said that the scenes are from a "horror movie".
The Environment Agency has issued 14 severe flood warnings, which means there is a danger to life.
Environment Agency chief Paul Leinster said that "extreme weather will continue to threaten communities this week", with water levels of the Thames expected to keep rising for the next 24 hours.The government of British Prime Minister David Cameron has been under attack for failing to dredge rivers and take other essential measures to prevent flooding.
Cameron, who is touring flood-hit southwest England, denied the government had been slow to respond.
"We have been dealing with it from the very moment it started," he said. "Where money was needed, we provided more money. Where military was needed, I made sure the military was deployed."
England has seen its wettest January since 1766 and thousands of homes have been flooded, with several areas, such as the low-lying Somerset Levels in the southwest, remaining submerged for over a month.
UK govt. flooding management deplored
An old British woman gets caught up in flooding in Old Windsor, Berkshire, February 10, 2014.The UK coalition government is facing mounting criticism for failing to do enough to prevent flooding, which has crippled parts of the country since almost two months ago.
The government’s response to the crisis was described as “very disorganized” by angry residents of English Thameside village of Datchet in Berkshire, who woke on Tuesday morning to witness their houses surrounded by water.
As water levels on the River Thames continued to rise, local people said they were waiting for the government to offer some help at least, but to no avail.
Frustrated residents in the southwest slammed the government authorities for failing to react quickly enough to help those affected by the devastation. Instead, volunteers are seen giving hand to people to come out of the water coming from the swollen River Thames.
The floods first hit southwest England around seven weeks ago, but they are now creeping eastwards towards London with several homes and businesses inundated.
Prime Minister David Cameron has visited the West Country in an attempt to personally oversee tackling the flooding, which has plunged the government into a bout of ministerial infighting over the handling of the situation.
On Monday, dramatic scenes could be seen in the commuter belt to the west of London with parts of towns such as Staines, Windsor and Datchet submerged by flooding from the River Thames.
This is while with more rain forecast, hundreds more homes face flooding and rail lines are set to suffer widespread disruption in affected areas.
All these come as the country’s Environment Agency has had to endure “massive” cuts to its budget since the Cameron government came to power.
Chris Smith, the agency’s chairman, said on Monday that he had warned the cabinet at the time that the budget cuts would undermine the agency’s ability to defend the country against flooding.