UK & World News
Mini-Heatwave After 'Unprecedented' Floods
Firefighters say they have had an "unprecedented" number of 999 calls after thunderstorms and torrential rain wreaked havoc in parts of the South East.
Flash floods left a number of streets under water, while lightning struck several buildings.
The storms are likely to give way to another scorching week, with temperatures of 30C (86F) or higher possible for a three-day spell from Wednesday.
But forecasters warned the mini-heatwave could bring yet more heavy showers, thunder and lightning, especially in the South.
In Canvey Island, Essex, one of the areas worst hit by Sunday's storms, urban search and rescue teams were sent to help people trapped by rising water.
Flooding was so "widespread" on parts of the island it took nearly 12 hours to bring the situation under control.
Essex Police closed roads in Southend, Rayleigh, Castle Point, Wickford and Ramsden Heath, while Southend University Hospital's accident and emergency department was shut temporarily.
Where roads remained open, flood-hit residents were said to be suffering "further anguish" because some motorists were driving too quickly and causing waves of water to enter homes.
Essex Fire and Rescue Service said it had received about 500 weather-related calls.
Assistant chief fire officer Paul Hill said: "Our approach to get through such an unprecedented level of calls was to deal with all risk to life as a priority.
"There was some frustration that with such widespread flooding our crews were unable to pump out properties because there was just nowhere to pump the water away, but we did everything we could to make sure people were and remained safe."
Across the UK, two flood warnings and 21 flood alerts remain in force, with Spixworth Beck, near Norwich, Norfolk, and the River Roach, Prittle Brook and Eastwood Brook in Southend, Essex, at particularly high levels.
John Curtin, the Environment Agency's director of incident management and resilience, said: "As we've seen over the past two days, flooding can happen very quickly, so we urge people to continue to check local weather forecasts and the Environment Agency website for flood risk information on a regular basis.
"We'll continue to monitor the situation closely and support local authorities, who will respond to any reports of surface water flooding."