FRUSTRATED residents have hit out at Anglian Water and National Rail after becoming “trapped” in their homes several times since November due to severe flooding.

A “collapsed drain” running below Merricks Lane in Basildon has caused chaos as residents are unable to drive through the floodwater. Previously, dozens of tankers have been sent out to pump the water away.

However, residents say they have been trying to contact Anglian Water, which is responsible for the drains, since the most recent deluge left the road inaccessible on Sunday morning.

So far, they claim nobody has turned up to clear it.

Echo: Residents must wade through floodwater to access their homes.Residents must wade through floodwater to access their homes. (Image: Submitted)

The lane itself comes under the responsibility of Essex County Council, while Anglian Water maintains the drains. 

However, due to the railway track running alongside the road, which is adjacent to the A13, Anglian Water says it needs permission from National Rail to repair the drains and fix the problem for good.

Resident Michelle, 53, described the situation as “beyond a joke”.
Echo: View from above - residents have been unable to get their cars out.View from above - residents have been unable to get their cars out. (Image: Submitted)

She said: “We’re trapped. It’s really frustrating as it makes you feel claustrophobic not being able to get your car off the drive.

“Every time it rains, we need a tanker sent out to clear the floodwater.

“The first time it happened, in November, 15 tankers were sent to drain it. Just over a week ago, two tankers were sent out.”

As the drains run under the nearby train tracks, Michelle says she is frustrated by National Rail’s delay in granting permission for the essential works.

She added: “Whenever National Rail need to do a job, we get a letter in the post and we just put up with it. But this is important, with flooding and collapsed drains, but they’re not co-operating.”

Echo: The road has been flooded since Sunday morning.The road has been flooded since Sunday morning. (Image: Cristina Clavijo)

Michelle also fears the possible impact of emergency services being unable to get through the floodwater.

She said: “A lot of elderly people live on our street, so they would need an ambulance if they had a fall. But they wouldn’t be able to get through.”

Neighbour Christina Clavijo added: “There’s so much water that we can’t get our cars out. I’ve been calling taxis out, just so I can get to work.”

A NetworkRail spokesperson said: We’re aware of the situation on Merricks Lane and have been contacted by Anglian Water, who are requesting access to address the drainage issues. 

“We are working with Anglian Water to make sure they can undertake the work safely and as quickly as possible without affecting the operational infrastructure of the railway.”