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​Preparing for Storm Dennis – updates and advice

Press release   •   Feb 14, 2020 16:46 GMT

Agencies are preparing for the arrival of Storm Dennis which may cause a second consecutive weekend of weather-related disruption.

The Met Office has issued warnings for heavy rain and high winds across the country on Saturday and Sunday.

Councillor David Jones, leader of Bury Council, said: “Storm Ciara showed just what can happen when huge amounts of rain fall in a very short time.

“While we don’t yet know what impact Storm Dennis may have in Bury, we’re closelymonitoring the weather forecast and we will have an extensive emergency response team on standby throughout the weekend.”

Meanwhile, teams from across the council have been working with the Environment Agency and partners to restore normality following the problems caused by Storm Ciara.

River levels last weekend were the second highest on record at Blackford Bridge and at Bury Ground, second only to those recorded in the Boxing Day floods in 2015 caused by Storm Eva. Rainfall at some locations on the Irwell was equivalent to more than a month’s rainfall in half a day.

Storm Ciara forced a number of families to leave their homes, and more than 100 calls for support were logged with the council’s emergency control team.

Teams were deployed to the worst affected areas during the flooding and over the following days to clear gulleys, sweep away debris, and remove fallen trees.

The disruption, however, was much lower than in the 2015 floods, when more than 700 properties had to be evacuated. Since then, work has been well under way on the £40 million flood defence scheme for Radcliffe and Redvales, designed to protect 870 properties in these high risk areas. Phase 1 around Close Park is near completion, and the second phase of works to protect the Redvales area is scheduled to be finished by the end of 2021.

Cllr Jones added: “I’d like to thank council staff and all those in our partner agencies for their tremendous work dealing with the turmoil caused by Storm Ciara, and especially members of the community who rallied round and volunteered to help in whatever way they could.

“I was at the rest centre and spoke to residents who had had to leave their homes temporarily, and everyone was in good spirits. It takes extreme events like this to remind us just how resilient we are in Bury, and I’m sure we will be similarly strong this weekend should we have any repeat.”

Advice:

  • If you are in immediate danger during a flood, call 999: otherwise, call the 24-hour Environment Agency incident hotline on 0800 80 70 60

ENDS

Press release issued: 14 February 2020.