Farmers rescued saving sheep from flooding

Two farmers had to be rescued after getting trapped up to their necks in water as they battled to save more than 100 sheep from flooded fields.

Sion Evans and his brother Dafydd were saved by a team of 10 firefighters in a boat after they waded into 10ft of water to rescue their flock on Tuesday (7 September).

After emergency crews plucked both stranded men out of the water, they helped rescue about 100 sheep from the field at Hafod, near Llanrwst, in the Conwy Valley, North Wales.

Storms battered North Wales and closed roads, and Snowdonia saw 4in of rain in 24 hours.

Speaking after the incident, Sion blamed new flood defences at Trefiw for their land being so badly flooded.

“The flooding here has got worse since they built the cob at Trefiw,” he told the North Wales Weekly News. “The cattle were stranded and I came down with my brother, but we became trapped up to our necks in water.

“We shouldn’t have gone into the water but we were thinking about the safety of the sheep.

“I’m really grateful to the fire service. The sheep were fine once we got them to dry land.”

David Edwell, area manager for Environment Agency Wales, said a flood alert and warning was sent to farmers late on Monday night and in the early hours of Tuesday so they could move their stock.

“People should act immediately when they receive a flood warning as floodwaters can rise very quickly, particularly in the Conwy Valley,” he added.

But he insisted the Llanrwst flood scheme did not cause this land to flood.

“The incident happened more than a mile upstream from the scheme,” he said.

“Allowing the natural flood plain in the valley to flood eases the water levels upstream and downstream of the scheme itself so would help reduce the flooding on Mr Evans’ land.”

Chris Nott, incident manager at North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We took the decision to rescue some of the sheep as they were extremely distressed and this avoided putting the lives of others who would attempt to rescue them at risk.”

He added: “It’s very dangerous to enter flooded water and we are asking people not to endanger their lives by doing so.”

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