This dramatic picture shows how a man had to be rescued by fire fighters this morning in Ingatestone after driving his van into five feet of flood waters.
Three crews from Billericay, Southend and Ingatestone were called out to Mountnessing Road at about 10.25am, and the man was rescued by 11.05am after using water rescue sleds.
The fire service have issued a warning motorists to exercise sensible precaution when they are confronted with flooded roads.
A spokesman for the service said: "It is vital that motorists exercise a little common sense. We are experiencing one of the wettest Januarys on record and over the last six weeks we have been called to dozens of incidents in which people have driven into flood water.
"Just driving into water and hoping for the best is not an option, by the time you find out the water is too deep you are already trapped.
"Just two feet of water is enough to float a car and six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars. This depth can cause loss of control or possible stalling as water is sucked into the exhaust or washes into the air intake.
"When confronted with flood water the best thing to do is to find an alternative route. If there is no way round they should park safely and get out to check the depth of the water before they drive into it."