A RARE amber warning has been issued as life-threatening floods and torrential rain are set to lash Britain.
Homes and businesses are likely to flood, and fast-flowing, deep floodwater could cause a danger to life, the Met Office has warned.
The wild weather is likely to spark travel chaos, too.
The Met Office had already warned people to brace for dangerous flooding today as heavy rain lashes the UK, with a month's worth of rain set to fall in the next few days.
Three inches of rain is forecast for some areas by the weekend, with storms and severe floods battering the country.
The Environment Agency has issued a whopping 24 flood warnings and 98 flood alerts, mostly across the south coast.
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Meanwhile the Met Office issued a number of yellow weather warnings after a band of heavy rain reached Cornwall on Wednesday afternoon and is set to let rip across Britain.
The first warning kicked in last night, with another in force across a large area of the UK for the whole of today, from 12am until 11.59pm.
A third warning will come into force at 3pm today until 6pm tomorrow for the east coast of Scotland, stretching from the English border up past Aberdeen with similar risks of flooding, and transport disruptions.
Brits have been advised to brace their homes and businesses, with severe flooding predicted.
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The Met warned of transport disruption, roads being deluged with water and communities being temporarily cut off due to the extraordinary rainfall.
Up to 20 cars were trapped in a swamp of water on the A27 in West Sussex after a day of rain drowned the region last night.
Police were forced to close the major thoroughfare as the busy carriageway continued to flood.
Shocking footage showed motorists at a standstill while encircled by several inches of water as some drivers tried to travel through it.
West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said the closure applies between the A259 west at Emsworth and A259 east at Fishbourne.
Commuters across the UK have been advised to expect "heavy delays" due to the brutal winter weather that is battering the country.
Cops in Winchester, Hampshire, also revealed a road had been blocked in Swanmore after a large tree was uprooted by powerful storms.
It brings a damp end to the working week for Brits, before snow is set to hit in a matter of days.
Met Office spokesman Craig Snell said: "The warning areas are where we are most concerned about the risk of flooding but it doesn't mean that the areas outside them are not going to see some pretty atrocious conditions."
He said a warning was in place for the southeast because "it has been quite wet there since the beginning of November with many places already seeing more than their month's share of rain".
He added that conditions were "still going to be a pretty miserable evening for the whole of the south" and Londoners would have an "unpleasant commute home this evening", but the wet conditions will have passed through the area by Thursday morning.
The Midlands and the north of England will have a "pretty miserable day" today after the rain swept in overnight, Mr Snell said.
"The rain will be accompanied by a brisk wind so it's not going to feel good."
But he added that Scotland could see "two days of persistent rain" and this may result in snow falling in the highlands – although this is not unusual for November.
"If you want to take a walk in the hills in Scotland tomorrow, you may come across snow but for the lower levels it is just going to be rain," he said.
RAC breakdown spokesman Rod Dennis warned motorists to "exercise great care" during the wet weather.
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He explained: "The chances of being involved in a collision rise dramatically in wet weather, and even more so if there's snow, so it's vital drivers slow down, leave plenty of space behind the vehicle in front and use their lights to make sure they're easily seen by other road users.
"The risk of aquaplaning where a vehicle's wheels lose contact with the road as they skim across standing water will be high, particularly for those who don't slow down to appropriate speeds for the conditions."
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