The recent flooding that the UK has seen from the increased downpour of rain has led to the director of the Environments Agency to state he is ‘alarmed’ that there could be more flooding on the way.
The large amounts of rain seen already this year have led to the land being saturated. When the land is saturated it makes it much more likely to flood as the water is not able to drain away. Therefore, the likeliness and seriousness of flooding will likely increase.
Nearly record levels of rainfall have been seen from September through to November, leading to around 900 properties being flooded in England. This number could be much greater however as it is estimated that 21000 homes ended up being protected from flooding due to defences and operations put in place to restrict the flooding.
Properties are still at risk of being flooded due to the fact that flood storage areas are full already and because of the land being saturated.
Mr Curtin, the director of the Environments Agency, encourages people who live in a high-risk flooding area (e.g. a floodplain) to sign up and look out for flood warnings from the Environment Agency. Currently, only around 50% of people living in such areas are signed up for such updates.
One week in November saw 50-100mm of rain fall between Sheffield and the Humber, this amount of rain is normally expected in a whole month for this region and not just one week!
Heavy rainfall that has continued in the past few days means that large areas across Yorkshire and the Midlands are already close on recording their wettest Autumns on record, and there’s still two weeks of November left.
Fishlake, a village in Yorkshire, has been the most affected place in the UK from the recent downpours. The village currently has 38 pumps which are being used to drain away the flood water.
South Yorkshire had about 200 troops deployed to also help out in the relief effort. The troops were helping to put up temporary flood barriers and providing sandbags to the locals.
Priorities have now turned to Worcestershire and Warwickshire as the River Avon has been expected to come to a high of 4m. The river has already caused the flooding of somewhere between 25 and 30 properties but if the river rises about 4m a further 100 more properties could end up getting flooded. The Environment Agency has stepped in and inserted temporary flood defences in the areas of Evesham and Stratford to try and li it any more damage taking place.
Some people have been critical that houses still continue to be built on floodplains however Mr Curtain has said that houses have been built on floodplains for a very long time, and as long as the houses are made resilient to flooding then there is no problem. He went on to use an example of the new build houses in Derby. They are situated by the river but have been designed in such a way to keep the risk of flooding to a minimal. This has been done by making access to the property above the level of the river with the carpark below, without taking any of the storage away from the floodplain.
At this moment in time there are about 140 flood warnings that are still in place in England, the highest recorded record of flood warnings is 200.