26 October 1998
Farmer still missing after floods
By FWi staff
A FARMER from Herefordshire is still missing after weekend floods which claimed at least 11 lives and caused damage estimated at £400 million.
William Mason, 62, disappeared after trying to move cattle after the River Wye burst its banks.
Mr Masons family raised the alarm when his sheepdog returned home alone but police called off a search on Saturday night due to more bad weather.
A further 11 people died in weather-related accidents as the worst storms for 20 years battered Wales, the Midlands and the West Country.
Loss-adjusters for insurance companies worked through much of the weekend in an effort to assess the damage which some insurers put at £400 million.
Tim Price of NFU Mutual reported “very severe” losses to property and farmland in the South West of England.
But it was too early to accurately assess what the final pay-out would be, he added.
The full extent of storm damage would only emerge after farmers submitted claims over the next few days, said Mr Price.