ISLANDERS have called for more information from the Environment Agency and even training to help get the pumps working properly in future.

The island’s 14 pumps were upgraded in 2007 at a cost of £6million, but residents are now calling for training on how to manually reset them, with many claiming they were switched off for hours.

Dave Fisher, 49, of San Remo Road, said: “I spoke to the Environment Agency and it said the pumps had failed and had to be manually reset. There is no one on the island who can do it.

“Last year there were seven people employed by the Environment Agency on Canvey and now there is no one. They had to wait for a bloke from Wickford to come down and it took him an hour as all the roads were closed.”

An Environment Agency spokesman said: “The volume of water was so great that the surface water drainage system was unable to transfer the water to the main rivers and the pumps.

“We have been operating pumps to remove the water and supporting the emergency services and local council.”