AN elderly man is lucky to be alive after his car was completely submerged in a flooded ford as Storm Desmond battered Britain.

West Midlands Ambulance Service crews were called to Walcot Lane Ford, Pershore at around 10.30am yesterday.

An ambulance, a rapid response vehicle, a paramedic officer and the Midlands Air Ambulance from Strensham attended the scene.

Fire and rescue crews also attended the scene from Pershore, Evesham and Worcester.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “Crews arrived to find a vehicle that had attempted to drive through the ford and had become completely overwhelmed by the depth of the water.

“The elderly man driving had managed to get himself out of the vehicle and was treated at the scene by medics for being cold and wet.

"Following checks and being warmed up, the man was transferred by ambulance to Worcestershire Royal Hospital for further assessment.

“The man was extremely fortunate that he managed to escape from vehicle very quickly.

“We would like to remind motorists to exercise extreme caution and not attempt driving through flooded roads. This not only puts their life at risk, but also the ambulance staff and other emergency service personnel called to provide a service in these most challenging of conditions.”

High winds also hammered the county which were felt particularly keenly on the Malverns.

Dave Throup, Environment Agency manager for Herefordshire and Worcestershire, warned people not to drive into Kempsey ford which was under 6ft of water today.

A video by Duncan Monk, published on the Worcester News website, showed how difficult it was to stand up on the Malvern Hills because of the strong winds.

Worcestershire escaped relatively lightly compared to parts of Cumbria and the Scottish borders as Britain was battered by Storm Desmond, bringing with it heavy rain and high winds.

A 90-year-old man is believed to have lost his life when a gust of wind blew him into the side of a moving bus in north London.

The unprecedented onslaught in Cumbria caused the Coledale High Bridge to collapse, cutting off the village of Braithwaite.

A month's rainfall fell in over 24 hours on Saturday and into Sunday in some parts of Britain and tens of thousands of homes were left without power.

A severe weather warning was still in place for much of Scotland today as a clean up operation from Storm Desmond swung into action.

In Hawick, in the Scottish Borders, around 100 properties were evacuated.

Although Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service have as yet received no requests to assist their colleagues elsewhere a spokesperson said they were on standby to offer tactical advisers, water rescue teams and high volume pumps if they were needed.

River levels on the Severn are falling as flooding warnings were downgraded to flood alerts.

As of 4am on today Worcester Gauge was 4.11 metres and falling, the peak of 4.5 metres happening at 6am on yesterday. Diglis Gauge was 3.59 metres and falling.

At the Kempsey Yacht Gauge the level of the river was 5.75 metres and falling slowly.

A peak level of 6.06 metres occurred at 7.45 am yesterday.