A POLICEMAN was hit by a car as he tried to control Canvey residents during the floods, it has emerged.

PC James Edmunds was trying to marshal traffic in Foksville Road, near High Street, when he was struck by the car.

He was on the island to set up traffic restrictions and help people caught up in the flood chaos.

But an impatient driver decided not to wait and tried to drive around the officer.

Sgt Mark McQuade was one of a number of officers onCanvey during the floods. He said: “PC Edmunds was trying to divert people in different ways and no one was listening. One decided to go around him and clipped him.

“He got knocked on the leg. He is fine and didn’t have any serious injuries. But I’ve never seen anything like it.”

“Most people realised what was going on and helped each other, but there were a few who were only out for themselves.”

Sgt McQuade said it was an incident that blighted the rest of the island’s spirit in trying to help people during the floods.

He added: “We saw a lot of community spirit, especially off Link Road – with people joking and laughing while they helped each other, but we would go to areas with loads of tension and lots of bedlam.

“People were taking things in their own hands. Their only concern was for themselves and their families – no one else. They were either trying to get off the island or to their families.”

Some motorists were also seen driving through residents’ front gardens and travelling in the wrong direction on roads to escape the floods.

Barry Palmer, Canvey Island Independent Party councillor for Canvey South, managed to get home to his flooded house as water began seeping in.

He said: “You can’t excuse that sort of behaviour, but to some extent it is understandable.

“There were people in the same situation as I was and if they were not insured, theywould have been trying to get home as quickly as possible. There was a lot of panic.”

The driver was later reported for careless driving.