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Downpours snarl Britons' Christmas travel

Dec. 22, 2012 at 12:18 PM

LONDON, Dec. 22 (UPI) -- Heavy rain across Britain snarled travel by train and car Saturday, with millions of people on the move at the beginning of the Christmas break.

Some of the worst flooding was in Devon and Cornwall in southwest England, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Houses were evacuated in some areas because of rising rivers, with roads into Braunton in North Devon blocked after the River Caen rose over its banks, flooding the business district.

The weather caused problems throughout England, Scotland and Wales.

Trains were canceled or rerouted and flights canceled. Closed roads and bad weather snarled the heavy holiday traffic.

Forecasters warned the bad weather is likely to continue through Christmas.

Rain did not keep shoppers away from the stores Saturday. Retailers reported a total of about 13 million people, most of them doing last-minute holiday shopping, collectively spent almost $5 billion.

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