FLOOD chaos hit county once again this week when river levels regan to rise after a short respite last weekend.

The water began to recede from flooded properties in Upton-upon-Severn on Saturday and Sunday, but Sunday's heavy rain brought more misery.

As water poured down from the Welsh mountains, the River Severn began slowly rising again to pre-weekend levels.

Flood warning officer John Hiley, of the Environment Agency, said the river was still rising at Bewdley on Wednesday morning, when it was 4cm below last Friday's level at Upton.

"There's an awful lot of water still on the way and the situation is changing all the time," he warned.

The Welland road into Upton was open, but the Hanley road remained closed and the Ryall road was only passable with care. Many people were ferried through deep water near Upton Marina in Army vehicles.

Army vehicles were also being used as emergency ambulances in the Upton area.

"We have reached a point of calm," said Sub Officer Dave Walker, of Upton's retained firefighting crew on Wednesday morning.

"We have moved people out of flooded properties but we are still giving out sandbags.

"The problem is that the flood water is moving in different ways from last week."

There was temporary relief from congestion on the main arteries south of Worcester with the opening of the river bridge in the city centre on Saturday afternoon, reducing bottlenecks around Powick.

With the Worcester-Hereford road also open, traffic flowed reasonably smoothly on Monday, only to grind to a halt again on Tuesday afternoon, when the city centre bridge was closed before the rush hour.

All routes to the Worcester southern link bridge were gridlocked at rush hours on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, as commuters faced delays of anything up to 1 hours.

To add to the motoring misery, road subsidence between the Upton/Ryall junction and the Ketch on the A38 caused diversions via Baughton, Defford and Pershore.

Police appealled for sightseers to stay away from flooded areas and for motorists to stay at home unless their journeys are essential.

They also stressed that people ignoring road closed signs could be putting their own and other people's lives at risk.