A SENIOR councillor insists steps are being taken to prevent problems on the county’s transport networks during severe weather.

Ray Howard, an Essex County Councillor and deputy member for highways and transport, has been a long-term campaigner for flood defences across the county and believes that for the first time in his four decades in local government effective steps are being taken to prevent problems.

Mr Howard said: “Before no one wanted to own up to the responsibility of solving flooding issues, but ever since it has been put in Essex County Council control something is actually being done. We are now working together alongside other agencies to move forward.

“The problem at this time of year is the drains get clogged up with leaves and although I have definitely seen machines out clearing them it is not something which can just be sorted overnight. We need to bear in mind that heavy rain was falling non stop on Monday night, and Essex actually hasn’t ended up that bad compared to other parts of the country. Unfortunately all that water has to go somewhere.

“Obviously there are serious problems when people are unable to get to work, but we have identified the problem areas and will now focus on solving the issues.”

Mr Howard raised his concerns at a regional flood defence committee in Suffolk yesterday.