Dec 27 2013
The AA has attended around 1,100 breakdowns every hour today on one of the busiest days of the festive period - as drivers ignore warnings about driving through flood water.
A spokesman for the organisation said they were expecting to respond to around 15,000 call-outs by the end of the day.
He said many drivers were not carrying out basic checks on vehicles and were ignoring road closure signs due to flooding, which was leading to engine problems.
Darron Burness, head of the AA's flood rescue team, said: "Despite all the warnings, people are still getting stuck after attempting to drive down a flooded road.
"Just don't risk it, as it's very difficult to gauge how deep it is and it takes only a tiny amount of water to wreck your engine."
So far today, the AA has attended around 76 flood-stricken vehicles, mainly in south-east England.
Mr Burness said: "Roads are closed for your safety, so ignoring closure signs is both foolhardy and illegal.
"If you get stuck, it ties up the emergency services unnecessarily and your insurer may well reject any claim."
Breakdowns were at their highest this morning, peaking at over 1,500 an hour.
Today is likely to be the busiest day on the roads between Christmas and New Year, according to an AA survey, conducted by Populus.
A third (33%) of those surveyed said they were driving more than 20 miles today, including 14% who were visiting family or friends and 10% who were hitting the shops or going on a day trip.
Since the storm struck on December 23, the AA's flood rescue team has attended more than 1,100 flood-related call-outs nationwide, including around 800 on Christmas Eve and 80 on Christmas Day.
Drivers are advised to drive slowly over the weekend as there is a risk of icy patches and debris from receding flood water.