28 July 2014
Last updated at 11:24
Commuters were forced to wade through water on their way to Worthing railway station
Lightning strikes, hail, torrential rain and flash flooding have caused major travel problems across east and south-east England.
There have been problems on the roads in Sussex, Essex and London.
London Fire Brigade said it was helping people trapped in their cars across parts of the capital.
Electrical supply problems caused by a lightning strike have led to disruption on Southern railways, with services subject to delays.
Rail services between Brighton, Hove and Shoreham-by-Sea are affected, and services are unable to call at Worthing as the subway is flooded.
Brighton and Hove buses are accepting Southern rail tickets between Brighton and Shoreham.
The lightning hit an electricity sub-station, causing power to the coastal rail route to be cut, although the main line to London was running normally, according to a Network Rail spokeswoman.
In Essex, a road in the village of Thaxted has collapsed and several homes were left flooded as a result of the heavy rain.
Five people in the village were taken to safety by fire crews and the boiler house at the village primary school in Bardfield Road has been flooded.
The A40 Western Avenue in Uxbridge has also been closed because of flooding, according to BBC Travel.
In north-west London, two women had to be rescued from a car stranded in flash-flooding after it became immobile outside South Ruislip Station.
The hailstorm was so fierce that it left swathes of ice on roads and pavements across Sussex
London Fire Brigade said it was also dealing with two stranded cars on Eastcote Road in Harrow.
At one stage the AA’s Special Operations Response Team, which rescues vehicles from floodwater, says six cars were stuck in floodwater in Uxbridge, West London.
Fifty properties have been flooded on Bedford Road in Ruislip, while Tube services have been affected, with no service currently on the Metropolitan Line between Ruislip and Rayners Lane.
The A40 near Hillingdon Station, west London, looked more like a river after the deluge
Jamie Davis, 17, of Ickenham, west London said the downpours, with flashing lightning and strong sounds of thunder, began at 09.00 BST and lasted for at least 45 minutes.
“My back garden is completely flooded. The drains are bubbling up and we can’t flush the toilet,” he said.
Sussex residents said the storm there started at 05.30 BST, leading to torrential rain.
Writing on Twitter Laurence Hill wrote: “Used to be roads. Now rivers of hail. Never seen anything like it.”
Brighton and Hove Police posted: “Localised flooding in Hove and Portslade, some roads not passable. Please do not enter flood water on foot or in cars.”
PC Andy Huggett, of Sussex Police, said: “Heavy rain after a long warm spell invariably leads to slippery roads and drivers need to immediately adjust to the new conditions.
“Along with the surface conditions, there are the added hazards of very heavy rain, flash flooding and poor visibility and it is essential that drivers make allowances.”
Some cars were left floating in rainwater after the early morning storm in Sussex
East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said its Brighton crews had dealt with a large number of weather-related emergency calls which had included flooding, lightning strikes “and false alarms caused by the weather”.
Brighton and Hove City Council said essential services were being maintained across the city, and drains would start to carry away the water once the rain subsided.
“City clean are working with East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service to clear roadside gullies.
“The refuse and recycling service is operating normally but might be a bit slower due to the weather,” a spokesman said.
The council said its offices in Kings House were currently closed due to flooding in the basement which was threatening some of the main electrical panels.
It said staff were relocating to other buildings, and there would be some disruption to services.
Jamie Davis, of Ickenham, in west London, said the downpours lasted for about 45 minutes
Are you in Sussex, Essex or London? How have you been affected by the bad weather? How are you dealing with the flooding? Please share your experiences, photos and videos, including contact details by contacting [email protected] or tweet us @bbc_haveyoursay
Or even contact us using the form below: