Friday, 31 January 2014

Update for 31/1

Friday 31 January 2014
Weather forecast
Wet and windy weather will spread east across the area today (Friday 31 Jan) with some heavy rain and gales. Widespread rainfall bringing totals of between 15 and 20 mm are expected.  Catchments are saturated and all rivers are expected to respond to the rain.

Flooding situation
There are currently 18 flood warnings in place across the area, five are in place for the Somerset Levels and Moors. As we enter a sequence of high tides, 12 tidal flood warnings have been issued for Saturday morning’s tide at 7.45am. 
The levels on the upper reaches of the Somerset Levels and Moors (upstream of Langport) have dropped, but rivers will remain sensitive and respond quickly to any further rain. Levels on the lower reaches of the catchment are stable but remain high.
The A372 at Pibsbury remains impassable as a result of the Somerset Highway’s closure of the bridge. For more information please check http://www.somerset.gov.uk/irj/public/services/directory/service?rid=/wpccontent/Sites/SCC/Web%20Pages/Services/Services/Resources/Flooding
The A372 between Othery and Langport is passable.
Significant issues still include:
  • Muchelney, Thorney and Langport – As you will know, the roads leading to the villages of Muchelney and Thorney remain flooded and impassable. Levels on the River Parrett have fallen allowing all of the pumping stations in the Langport area to remain operational.
Please bear in mind that the rivers continue to react very quickly to additional rainfall and as a result any pumping may be short-term to avoid flooding further downstream. We continue to monitor the situation. 
If you or someone you know is in a vulnerable position please contact your local district council for help – South Somerset District Council covers the Muchelney and Thorney area.
  • West Sedgemoor – The levels at West Sedgemoor Pumping Station are stable. We have been able to maintain operation of the two pumps at West Sedgemoor.
The local roads are still impassable and some isolated properties are cut off. If you or someone you know is in a vulnerable position please contact your local district council for help – South Somerset District Council covers the West Sedgemoor area.
  • Curry Moor - The situation on Curry Moor remains the same. The moor is still full and the spillways at Hookbridge and Athelney are still running. We continue to monitor the situation closely at Curry Moor and hope to commence pumping as soon as conditions allow.
Please bear in mind that the rivers continue to react very quickly to additional rainfall and as a result any pumping may be short-term to avoid flooding further downstream. We continue to monitor the situation. 
Some people have requested that we continue to include information on the local roads. The A361 remains closed and this will be the case until the spillways stop running. The high spring tides this weekend will also impact on our ability to pump.
  • Northmoor and Saltmoor - Pumping stations are still operating at full capacity. An additional 18 temporary pumps are operating to support these pumping stations. You will be aware the only remaining access road to Moorland is impassable for smaller vehicles. Stathe Road from Burrowbridge to Stathe also remains impassable for smaller vehicles.
Levels have continued to recede at Saltmoor as a result of the continual pumping. Levels at Northmoor were slightly higher at the pumping station following this morning’s high tide but are now receding.
  • Sowy - Monksleaze Clyce Sluice is open to relieve pressure on upstream levels in the Langport area. Levels on the Sowy have risen slightly as expected. We are monitoring the situation and will respond if necessary.
The A372 at Pibsbury remains impassable as a result of the Somerset Highway’s closure of the bridge. For more information please check http://www.somerset.gov.uk/irj/public/services/directory/service?rid=/wpccontent/Sites/SCC/Web%20Pages/Services/Services/Resources/Flooding
The A372 between Othery and Langport is passable.
  • Westonzoyland – Levels continue to recede. The temporary pumps remain in place at Westonzoyland Pumping Station. Levels are also dropping on the King’s Sedgemoor Drain.
  • Long Load - Levels in Long Load (Kingsmoor and Witcombe Bottom) remain stable. We are now operating two fixed and three temporary pumps at Long Load and the gravity outlet is operational.
  • Brue and Axe – River levels in the catchment remain high but stable with no significant issues.
It is important to note that this is an ever-changing situation. Managing the pumping operations is a fine balance – we need to ensure that by lowering water levels in one area, it does not increase the flood risk to property in another.
Please be assured that we continue to monitor levels in the catchments 24 hours a day and operate additional pumps as soon as it is possible to do so. You will appreciate that because the flooding is widespread, we have to consider the effects of flood water throughout the area and operate the different pumping stations accordingly.
It is important to bear in mind that any further rainfall will cause the rivers to rise and could alter any pumping regime.
Any information on road closures are to the best of our knowledge – please contact the Highways Department at Somerset County Council for more information.

For weather updates please keep an eye on local TV and radio and visit our website to see the flood warnings in force.
Our Incident Hotline No is 0800 807060 and ask to speak to the Flood Incident Duty Officer for the area.
Floodline No: 0845 988 1188.

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