DRIVERS are being warned to take notice of warning signs on one of Wearside’s flood-hit roads.
The appeal comes after fire crews were called to Moor Lane, in Cleadon, at 11.59pm on Christmas Day to rescue a car from the floods.
The area is notorious for flooding in times of heavy rainfall, and the vehicle is just one of several cars that have had to be rescued in recent weeks.
South Shields firefighter John McMillan said: “Just in the last week, we’ve rescued three people from trapped vehicles here.
“One was a taxi driver who said that he’d got through earlier that day. That’s a classic example.
“It doesn’t matter how well you think you know the road, it doesn’t take a lot of rainfall to flood.
“There are fields on either side and the water from them has nowhere else to go.
“If the water is coming up to the top of the wheels, then the car is not going to get through it and it’s a considerable stretch – about 200 metres.
“When we rescued the taxi driver, and on another occasion when we rescued an Asda delivery van driver, the water was up to our waists.
“It’s not just a puddle, it is very deep.
“We just really want to urge people to be more careful and to take more notice of road signs.
“It’s not like there’s not an alternative route either. You can double back and go round the other way.
“It might add five minutes and a couple of extra miles to a journey, but damaging a car, or even writing it off, just isn’t worth it.
“It’s an inconvenience to us to have to rescue people trapped here, but we would never leave someone who was.
“At the same time, we can’t be in two places at once, and there could be someone else whose life is in danger, who we are unable to get to because of it.”
Insp Sharon Chatterton, of Northumbria Police, said: “We would urge motorists to take notice of any signs that are on the roads for their own safety.
“If signs are present then the roads are not safe to use.
“We will remove signs once roads become passable, so please take note.”