News

15-06-19

Firefighters’ response to flooding continues

Firefighters are continuing to lead the response to the flooding in the Lincolnshire village of Wainfleet.

Residents in an additional 290 homes have been contacted and asked to vacate to a specially set-up rest area. Additional national fire and rescue service resources and firefighters have been mobilised to assist.

In the early hours of the morning (June 15th), a large crack – approximately one kilometre in length – appeared in the previously repaired river banking, raising concerns that the banks could burst affecting properties in the immediate area.

As part of fire services’ response additional procedures and control measures have been put in place.

Additional High-Volume Pumps (HVPs) have been mobilised to assist, five additional fire engines have been deployed to Skegness Strategic Holding Area (SHA), a rescue boat and rescue raft have been requested in case they are required to help rescue people from their homes, should the bank fail.

This is part of a national response, coordinated by the National Fire Chiefs Council’s National Resilience (NR) arrangements. This means the best equipment, rescue teams and expertise can be deployed.

Lincolnshire FRS is currently being provided with:

  • Additional five fire engines available to be sent to Wainfleet
  • 12 HVPs available
  • Ten now pumping water to relive pressure from the River Steeping, with two available for deployment if the river banks breaks
  • Additional boats and rescue rafts
  • Local pumping is taking place including from houses and local sub-stations
  • The Environment Agency ultra-high-volume pump is moving water from the local area from the River Steeping into Hob Hole Bank

Phil Loach, Vice Chair of the National Fire Chiefs Council, said: “The situation in Lincolnshire has changed due to the breach to the repair and the ongoing bad weather. Firefighters and teams continue to coordinate the on-scene response and are doing a fantastic job, in what can be described as difficult and challenging circumstances.  

“Overnight National Resilience Control mobilised more national assets to stem and redirect the flood water whilst also assisting the community to make plans, many of whom have now been evacuated as the situation has changed.

“The NFCC is committed to ensuring a coordinated and joined-up approach is provided in support of all fire services across the country.

“Incidents such as these highlight the dynamic demands that can be placed on fire and rescue services reinforcing the point that the government must ensure fire services are resourced to risk and not just demand. It is essential to ensure that the FRS can continue to provide this response across the country as and when required.”

Fire and rescue services are the largest contributors to the national flood response; which means they work together and with partners to deliver a coordinated response including the deployment of fire appliances, teams, high volume pumps, wading teams, swift water rescue trained firefighters on powered rescue boats, tactical advisers, logistical support and standard fire pumps.

Work continues in conjunction with other blue light services and organisations such as the Environment Agency and the Met Office to monitor and evaluate the changing conditions.

More information:

  • NFCC is committed to working alongside the police, ambulance service, the military and other partners to ensure the best possible response is delivered to communities when affected by wide area flooding.
  •  High volume pumps can move up to 7,000 litres of water per minute, while powered boats crewed by swift water rescue trained firefighters and wading teams are essential in helping rescue people. and ensuring vital supplies – including medical support - can be delivered.
  • The National Resilience Assurance Team (NRAT), supported by lead NFCC officers, coordinates the national response, provides vital support to government and supports fire and rescue services with additional assets.
  • NR also provides invaluable support in response to these nationally significant incidents, working to the National Coordination and Advisory Framework (NCAF), to ensure a flexible response is put in place.
  • The Fire and Rescue Service also coordinates a national response toide area flooding on behalf of DEFRA through a well-established and highly effective National Coordination and Advisory Framework.
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