UK austerity cuts blamed for weather havoc

Emergency services under spotlight as damage and flooding caused by winter storms affect tens of thousands of people.

Britain has been left reeling from a succession of winter storms which have caused widespread damage and flooding, affecting tens of thousands of people.

Now the government is facing accusations that its austerity measures have hampered the work of emergency services. The Environment Agency has an annual budget of $1.9bn per year, but it recently announced it will cut around 1,500 jobs by October 2014.

In England alone, seven people have died and up to 1,700 homes have been affected by flooding since mid-December 2013. Damage is expected to cost well over $1bn.

Al Jazeera’s Paul Brennan reports from London.

Source: Al Jazeera