FLOODS described as “the worst ever seen” hit Looe today after high tides and strong winds combined to leave homes and businesses counting the cost.
Sea water poured into the streets of East and West Looe Looe at high tide - around 8am - flooding businesses, homes and shops.
Looe fire crews were out helping residents along with members of HM Coastguard and Looe RNLI until the water began to drain away around 9am.
Jeff Penhaligon, Looe harbour master, who has lived in the town for 40 years, said: “The floods were the worst I have ever seen.
“The sea water was coming over the main Quay outside the harbour office.
“I have never seen as much water in the town- the depth was one metre of water in the worst affected areas.
“We just get on with it but it would be nice if we could have a breakwater.”
The Old Sail Loft restaurant on Quay Street had flooding coming out of their toilets.
Michelle Sadler, manager, said: “We won’t be opening today- it’s frustrating that the drains can’t cope with the water.
“The drains are the problem- we have had water coming from the toilets and from the drain in the cellar.
“There were four or five inches of water inside the building.
“Our elderly 81-year-old neighbour, who lives alone, has been hit badly by flooding in her home.”
Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall councillor for West Looe, said: “It was quite bad in Fore Street with three foot of water.
“The floods were worse than last time- the difference was that the wind was coming from a South Easterly direction.
“That surge is what causes the damage.
“All the combination of things that could go wrong did.
“On Hannafore, West Looe the wind and sea were fierce and spectacular- I could see it hitting the buildings.
“I got up at 6am and looked out- I knew it was going to be quite bad and kept an eye on everything.
“A lorry came down Fore Street and flooded businesses, which causes more problems for people who already have problems.
“The fire crews, coastguard, the volunteers and RNLI are absolutely brilliant.”
The flooding was bad on the Quay in West Looe, according to Gerry Wood, manager for South East Cornwall Coastguard.
Mr Wood said: “People should be prepared for it and be proactive.
“We asked motorists to slow down and get them clear of the flooded areas.”