THERE is a temptation as the waters rise and the winds blow to look for scapegoats.

Those facing undoubted hardship as flood waters rise and stormy weather removes roofs and even threatens schools with closure need assistance. Although there are scenes of community cohesion as residents rally to help one another, there are also calls for more to be done by those in authority.

As the unusual storms battering Hampshire continue unabated it seems, it is only natural that those affected will seek some sort of assurances that not only is immediate help at hand, but that the future will not look like this. It is not surprising then that local authorities and agencies tasked with ensuring flooding is managed safely will come under the spotlight.

Yet before pointing fingers we should accept these are strange times. As with heavy snow falls, can we expect those in authority to spend huge amounts on defences against bad weather extremes when they come occasionally? And at a time when funds are needed elsewhere?

While we are right to look to the future and ask whether the time has come to make those investments now, we should firstly concentrate on the task at hand and helping those in need.

Recriminations seldom help while the flood waters rise and the winds blow.