THE entire coast of Cornwall is on flood alert once again as the county braces itself for torrential rain and an “apocalyptic” storm - dubbed Hercules II.
Storm chasers are gearing up for a combination of huge waves and spring tides heading towards the Cornish coast this morning after one of the wettest Januaries on record.
The Environment Agency announced a flood warning yesterday afternoon and said beaches, coastal promenades, roads and footpaths would be “extremely dangerous”.
The Agency also said Bude, Newquay, Perranporth, Portreath, St Ives, Lamorna, Penzance, Porthleven, Mullion, Pentewan, Seaton and Kingsand could all be at risk of flooding.
It is particularly concerned about the high tides on Saturday and Sunday and said it will continue to monitor the situation.
Up to 4cm of rainfall is forecast today coinciding with this evening’s high tide, when waves of up to 30ft are expected to slam into the coast which could cause chaos when accompanied by 70mph winds.
On the North coast flooding is possible from high tide tonight and at every high tide through until Monday morning.
On the South coast the flood warning starts from high tide this morning and is in place through to Monday morning.
An Environment Agency spokesman said: “Beaches, coastal promenades, roads and footpaths will be extremely dangerous. The public are advised to avoid these areas.
“Catchments are saturated and this may increase flood risk. Strong winds, a tidal surge and large waves will coincide with spring tides.”
The fact that the gales will coincide with high spring tides means storm surges could inundate Cornish coastal communities.
Surf forecast site magicseaweed has called the storm Hercules Take Two - a sequel of the storm that battered the coast at the start of this month - and have said it will be as damaging, dangerous and "similarly apocalyptic".
The Met Office has issued an amber “be prepared” warning for rain in Cornwall today and tomorrow and a yellow “be aware” warning for high winds on Sunday.
A Met Office spokesman said: “20-30 mm of rain will fall quite widely, with around 40 mm on some high ground in the southwest of England and south Wales. The heavy rain will be accompanied by strong to gale force winds.
“The public should be aware of possible disruption, primarily due to further flooding, chiefly in areas already, or recently, affected.”
The latest storm, that has been christened Storm Brigid by the Weather Channel, comes on top of the fifth wettest January since records began.
The Met Office said across southwest England the 222.6 mm of rainfall up to January 28 meant January 2014 was already the wettest January since 1995 (224.4 mm).
Meanwhile, a team of storm-chasing marine scientists are planning to set up their monitoring equipment at Porthleven today.