Thursday, June 28, 2007

Flood news from here

There is none!

Well, we had an exciting drive through a burst main on Monday, and that's about the extent of it. I gather the other parts of Yorkshire took the brunt of the problem this time. The nearest area to us that's vulnerable to flooding is the Hebden Bridge/ Todmorden valley in which we used to live, and I'm told the flood alarms were sounding there on Monday, but the new defence system held.

But we've been watching the news, reading and talking about the flooding issue a lot. Lyddie didn't understand it at all before Monday. At first she was completely unaccepting of the idea that rainwater could actually get into a house, other than through a leaky roof. We had to explain about rivers bursting their banks, and then the story of the dam in Rotherham threatening to breach triggered yet more questions and answers and explanations about reservoirs, water supplies and dams. Rotherham is about 35 miles away from us, over the South Pennine hills, so it's kind of close to home.

Tom and I got into one of our heated debates about states of emergency, such as the one recently called in Hull, specifically about the question of whether we'd evacuate unquestioningly if ordered to. I think we kind of agreed in the end that it wouldn't be unquestioning, although I think I'm right in thinking we'd have no legal option if a state of emergency had been declared? But we were thinking about the official New Orleans response to Katrina, for example, when the decisions taken by officials weren't necessarily the best thing for everyone.

Apparently we're due for a lot more rain at the weekend and the ground around here is already very wet. The view from our window looks out on some of the 50% of UK housing stock since WWII built on flood plains, plus electrical switching station which would be a bit vulnerable if the River Calder burst its banks, but there haven't been any problems since a drainage system was incorporated into that land about 10 years ago so I think they're fairly safe.

There's just one of our brood away from home - Zara's staying with friends in the Midlands and due back tomorrow, so we'll be glad to get her back.


Blogger Ruth said...

I don't *think* they can force you to evacuate. I hope not anyway. We were advised to cos of the power cable but no one checked to see if we had.

5:30 pm, June 28, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

Yes I just checked and it came in the horrendous Civil Contingiencies Act 2004. Section 22 clause 3 (e) says:

"Emergency regulations may make provision of any kind that could be made by Act of Parliament or by the exercise of the Royal Prerogative; in particular, regulations may-
(e) require, or enable the requirement of, movement to or from a specified place;"

Basically stating we have no powers and our lives are in their hands, whether we like it or not :-/

6:34 pm, June 28, 2007  
Blogger Ruth said...

Oh dear:( ...however in all the chaos here I think it highly unlikely Hull could be that efficent to be able evacuate anyone effectively let alone those who refused to go. Locking the stable door after the horse had bolted was what went on here this time. Also unless they had been quicker off the mark it was a case of evacuate to where cos most places around here had problems.

8:07 pm, June 28, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

Yes I got the impression that was the case!

I guess in practice they can only take control of us if they actually in control of the situation - which they obviously weren't, then!

8:23 pm, June 28, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

Hmmm, getting sick of this portrait pic now..

11:16 pm, June 28, 2007  
Blogger Ruth said...

Hull are never in control of anything lol

1:55 pm, June 29, 2007  

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