Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Once in eighty years!

The 'sump' where Scotch Brook
 goes under the canal about
to overflow into the canal!
What is happening to our weather? I've seen the man from the Met Office explain that the jet stream is the cause of all our problems - instead of crossing the Atlantic and whizzing past us to the north of Scotland, it is now rushing south of us and whooshing over France and Germany bringing low pressure systems to the British Isles. But no one has explained why! And as a result Britain has had weeks and weeks of torrential rain and floods.

Scotch Brook breaks it's banks
 and The Star is flooded
Six or seven years ago we had a down pour that caused floods in the Stonefield area, Walton and Aston Lodge. There was uproar. Public meetings were held. We wee told by officials from the Council not to panic - "This is a once in eighty years phenomena" they said! Dare they say that now?

It's a serious question. If the strategic planning is based on the 'one in eighty years' theory, the planning needs to change. The world's weather patterns are not behaving themselves. And if the experiences of the last few months are anything to go by, we've all got to adopt a 'what if it floods' mindset. So Staffordshire County Council must ask themselves if their six monthly gulley emptying policy is adequate. What systems need to be implemented to get sandbags delivered to vulnerable properties? Locally, what steps need to be taken at Pingle Lane to deal with the brook in full spate. Why did the Scotch Brook break its banks in Stafford Road? Does the undergrowth on the banks need to be cleared? Why does the run off from the Common Plott miss the gulley in the corner by the flats and pour down Oulton Road. These are jut a few of the issues I've identified - but there will be dozens of others. Has the time come for someone somewhere in an office in Stafford to be given the job of reassessing the problem? It is obvious that the 'once in eighty years' principle is a load of baloney! 

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