A TEAM from Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue has been lending a hand to help the flood relief operation in Somerset.

An officer from High Wycombe joined five firefighters from Aylesbury, taking one of the brigade's three Unimog four-wheel drive fire engines to assist.

The move is part of a mutual assistance agreement that exists among fire and rescue services across the country.

The team, which arrived last Thursday, January was expected to stay in Somerset until the early part of this week.

Group Manager Roger Brinklow, Service Delivery Manager for Aylesbury Vale, said: "As everyone is aware, following extreme weather conditions over the past months, areas of the Somerset Levels have been severely affected by the heavy rainfall.

"This has led to local residents experiencing extreme difficulty in moving around the area, with many properties still uninhabitable due to the level of the water.

"In response to a request from the Fire and Rescue Service National Coordination Centre, Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority has provided a 4X4 pumping appliance, with a crew of five personnel and a liaison officer, for deployment within the affected area."