How long were pumps down?

Hundred sof people were affected by flooding

Hundred sof people were affected by flooding

First published in News by

ANGRY residents have told the Environment Agency to come clean over how many Canvey pumping stations were out of action during last Sunday’s storm.

As many as 200 homes were hit by flooding, which turned roads into rivers and caused thousands of pounds in damage.

Residents claim problems with Canvey’s pumping stations, and the Environment Agency’s failure to repair them quickly enough, condemned many homes and businesses to greater damage.

Initially, the Environmental Agency said the island’s 13 pumps were off for only 12 minutes after a power cut caused by lightning.

However, it has finally admitted the station at Croppenburg, off Orrmo Road, was off for two hours.

Now residents claim they have evidence the pumping station was not working for much longer – and that the pumps at May Avenue were also off for longer than 12 minutes.

The pumps are designed to move water that settles within the basin of the island out over the seawall.

The pumps are meant to be operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and are automatically triggered by a rise in water levels Barbara Johnson, 55, of Holbeck Road said: “When we went to the seawall at 6.30pm on Sunday to Croppenburg, the Environment Agency had just got there.

“Engineers explained they had just come from MayAvenue. After Croppenburg, they went to the one at St Anne’s.

“Someone is going to have to sue them. It’s the only way we are going to get the truth. The engineers said to us there were only ten engineers in the whole of Essex on call from the Environment Agency.

“They said they had come from South Woodham and Chelmsford.

The traffic was completely gridlocked and they couldn’t get on the island.

“We only moved back in January after the last flooding. I find it totally unacceptable.”

Retired engineer and neighbour Chris Harvey, 62, of Holbeck Road, went to the stations at Croppenburg and May Avenue during the storm to see what was going on. He said: “The major pumping station at Croppenburg was out for four hours and others which needed to be restarted after an earlier power failure were also out for as long.

“In addition, one pump was already under repair at the time of the flood. Canveywas, in effect, left with very little pumping capacity – and not for the first time.”

“They had to reset pumps in MayAvenue and they had to come on to the island to reset the Leigh Beck pumps.

“I know the pumps were not working after the power outage.

“It takes residents to raise the alarm to get a man from God knows where to push a reset button.

All the while, hundreds of homeowners look on at the water getting higher and higher.”

Mr Harvey called Anglian Water at about 2pm that day, telling them the pumps were not working.

He said: “They called back at around 3pm and confirmed that.

They said the Environment Agency told them the pumps were not running.”

The Environment Agency said: “We are currently investigating the event in detail and will be submitting our report to Essex County Council.”

Comments (11)

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6:52am Tue 29 Jul 14

Now say thank you says...

Let's face it, these pumps were off for up to 6 hours at least
Let's face it, these pumps were off for up to 6 hours at least Now say thank you
  • Score: 8

10:07am Tue 29 Jul 14

Russ13 says...

Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg
ing..........

I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck.

From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage.

None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands.

What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency.

That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks.

The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan.
Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg ing.......... I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck. From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage. None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands. What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency. That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks. The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan. Russ13
  • Score: 1

10:59am Tue 29 Jul 14

Audioman says...

Move away from Canvey and STOP MOANING
anyway the water did clean the roads for you
grumpy lot .
Move away from Canvey and STOP MOANING anyway the water did clean the roads for you grumpy lot . Audioman
  • Score: 0

11:05am Tue 29 Jul 14

Foyle1 says...

Russ13 wrote:
Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg

ing..........

I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck.

From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage.

None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands.

What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency.

That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks.

The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan.
In addition they need to clean out the road gulleys and jet the drains to remove years of road debris, winter road salt, etc. This has not been done for years. Some road drains have weeds growing in them.
[quote][p][bold]Russ13[/bold] wrote: Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg ing.......... I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck. From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage. None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands. What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency. That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks. The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan.[/p][/quote]In addition they need to clean out the road gulleys and jet the drains to remove years of road debris, winter road salt, etc. This has not been done for years. Some road drains have weeds growing in them. Foyle1
  • Score: 3

11:41am Tue 29 Jul 14

Russ13 says...

Foyle1 wrote:
Russ13 wrote:
Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg


ing..........

I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck.

From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage.

None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands.

What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency.

That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks.

The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan.
In addition they need to clean out the road gulleys and jet the drains to remove years of road debris, winter road salt, etc. This has not been done for years. Some road drains have weeds growing in them.
Probably one of those grey areas where local authority and EA point at each other and won't take responsibility for it.

Of course, local residents could help too. I know there was a little project in Rochford after the flood loast year where Rochford Hundred Rugby club got a group of volunteers together to clear the brook/drainage ditch that runs through their ground and neighbouring land.

There must be areas on Canvey where locals could safely/legally clear debris from such areas to help improve the situation while the powers that be decide what they're going to do.

Whilst it probably shouldn't come to this, rather than spending time having your picture taken on a pumping station and going on about what's happened in the past, you could be taking direct action to make things better in the future....... although the latter requires some effort and the former doesn't :-/
[quote][p][bold]Foyle1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Russ13[/bold] wrote: Horse..... dead.....a.....flogg ing.......... I can understand how the residents of Canvey are upset by the pumps not working as they should have done but much like the amount of rain that fell was unprecidented, the lightning strike knocking out the power was just incredible bad luck. From what I remember about last years floods, the main problem was debris being washed into the pumping areas which then caused a blockage. None of this is directly the EA's fault, these things are out of their hands. What they need to do now is to make sure the pumps are in good working order should they be needed and free of debris. On top of this they need to ensure there are people who can get to these pumps within minutes in the event of an emergency. That's not going to be an easy task given the transport links on/off the Island in the event of flooding. Perhaps there are locals with the necessary skills/aptitude who could be called on (I'm sure there are people who are willing to help out) when needed to perform these tasks. The problem is, like most organisations there just aren't enough resources to have 2-3 members of staff sitting on Canvey just in case it rains heavily, they just need to work out a smarter and faster response plan.[/p][/quote]In addition they need to clean out the road gulleys and jet the drains to remove years of road debris, winter road salt, etc. This has not been done for years. Some road drains have weeds growing in them.[/p][/quote]Probably one of those grey areas where local authority and EA point at each other and won't take responsibility for it. Of course, local residents could help too. I know there was a little project in Rochford after the flood loast year where Rochford Hundred Rugby club got a group of volunteers together to clear the brook/drainage ditch that runs through their ground and neighbouring land. There must be areas on Canvey where locals could safely/legally clear debris from such areas to help improve the situation while the powers that be decide what they're going to do. Whilst it probably shouldn't come to this, rather than spending time having your picture taken on a pumping station and going on about what's happened in the past, you could be taking direct action to make things better in the future....... although the latter requires some effort and the former doesn't :-/ Russ13
  • Score: -3

12:01pm Tue 29 Jul 14

ravnos says...

lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... between rain and tidal surges the sea wants it back... can only hold off nature for so long...
lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... between rain and tidal surges the sea wants it back... can only hold off nature for so long... ravnos
  • Score: 3

12:19pm Tue 29 Jul 14

Ian P says...

ravnos wrote:
lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... between rain and tidal surges the sea wants it back... can only hold off nature for so long...
"lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... " So is much of Holland but the Dutch do not suffer like Canvey.
[quote][p][bold]ravnos[/bold] wrote: lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... between rain and tidal surges the sea wants it back... can only hold off nature for so long...[/p][/quote]"lets face it.... Canvey is reclaimed land... " So is much of Holland but the Dutch do not suffer like Canvey. Ian P
  • Score: 4

1:48pm Tue 29 Jul 14

burghcastle says...

I don't know how long the pumps were down. Who gives a monkeys anyway.
I don't know how long the pumps were down. Who gives a monkeys anyway. burghcastle
  • Score: -2

5:39pm Tue 29 Jul 14

Howard Cháse says...

However long (or short) it was I think we can all agree that it was too long..
However long (or short) it was I think we can all agree that it was too long.. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 1

8:26pm Tue 29 Jul 14

emcee says...

Quote: "Someone is going to have to sue them. It’s the only way we are going to get the truth."
-
Quite right.
Quote: "Someone is going to have to sue them. It’s the only way we are going to get the truth." - Quite right. emcee
  • Score: 3

9:47pm Tue 29 Jul 14

Russ13 says...

emcee wrote:
Quote: "Someone is going to have to sue them. It’s the only way we are going to get the truth."
-
Quite right.
On what basis do you think suing them would stand up in court?

I'll bet that they'll have paperwork/processes in place to demonstrate they had a plan/procedures for such eventualities but effectively an "act of God" prevented the plans being executed.

It certainly wouldn't be reasonable to expect the EA to have staff permanently stationed on Canvey.
[quote][p][bold]emcee[/bold] wrote: Quote: "Someone is going to have to sue them. It’s the only way we are going to get the truth." - Quite right.[/p][/quote]On what basis do you think suing them would stand up in court? I'll bet that they'll have paperwork/processes in place to demonstrate they had a plan/procedures for such eventualities but effectively an "act of God" prevented the plans being executed. It certainly wouldn't be reasonable to expect the EA to have staff permanently stationed on Canvey. Russ13
  • Score: -1

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