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Flash floods are causing chaos across London, with cars left stranded in several feet of water, Tube stations shut and shoppers forced to flee a deluge.
Roads are under water in various parts of the capital – from Sutton and Camberwell to Walthamstow and Barking – as a line of severe and slow-moving thunderstorms hit after an amber weather warning was issued.
Workers at the Stratford Centre scrambled to sweep away water after downpours hit, while flooded underpasses in places such as Walthamstow, Kingston and Worcester Park were impassable.
In parts of the capital up to 10cm of rain was expected to fall in the space of a few hours, more than double the amount that would usually fall across the whole of July.
By 4.30pm London Fire Brigade had already taken 300 calls about severe flooding in the capital, with more downpours expected until 7pm.
A London bus negotiates deep water after flash flooding in Walthamstow
Flooding in Redbridge, east London
The Met Office warned of a "line of thunderstorms stretching northeast from Surrey towards western Essex".
Forecasters said: "This line will remain fairly slow-moving through the coming hours. Each shower could bring 20-40mm of rainfall within an hour, with isolated locations that experience several showers perhaps seeing 75-100mm of rainfall within the space of a few hours.
"Although some isolated lightning is likely rainfall and the associated surface water flooding are expected to bring the greatest impacts."
A flooded underpass at Worcester Park, Surrey
An amber weather warning issued by the Met Office
(Image: Met Office)
It's the second time in a month that the capital's streets have been underwater, with the fire service receiving more than 1,000 calls about flooding on July 13.
Today's amber warning is at the centre of a far bigger yellow weather alert covering much of southern England.
Torrential downpours have defined the weekend following several days of erratic weather, with scorching highs nudging 30C followed swiftly by deluges.
The Met police tweeted an image of submerged cars and reminded people not to drive through floodwater, warning rescue operations use up valuable resources.
The force has been assisting firefighters across the capital and warned of severe disruption on the A406 North Circular.
Shoppers at TFC in Camberwell were reportedly stranded, while Walthamstow was under water.
The A12's Green Man Tunnel in Wanstead is closed while the nearby Redbridge roundabout is flooded too.
Water poured into Kennington Underground Station in the south of the capital.
Further afield in Braintree, Essex a tornado rose high above the ground.
Yesterday, Essex Weather Centre tweeted: "Severe weather possible during Sunday.
"Flash flooding (main risk), frequent lightning and short-lived tornadoes."
A tornado near Braintree, Essex
Send your photos of flooding or severe weather to [email protected]