High And Dry


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A presentation delivered at Manchester University on 17th September 2008 as first in the annual lecture series of the GA Manchester branch.

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  • High And Dry

    1. 1. "I saw a woman crying in her flooded front room. I thought: if anything, you're making it worse love…"   Jimmy Carr
    2. 2. High and Dry ? Geographical Lessons from the Yorkshire Floods of June 2007 Alan Parkinson Secondary Curriculum Development Leader Geographical Association [email_address]
    3. 3. Objectives… <ul><li>To outline the impact of the floods of June 2007 in Yorkshire </li></ul><ul><li>To explore the issue of flooding and risk, and the concept of ‘resilience’ </li></ul><ul><li>To summarise any “lessons learned” </li></ul><ul><li>To discuss the question of whether this was a “natural hazard”. </li></ul>
    4. 4. http://animoto.com Make your own movies !
    5. 5. Which of the numbers is the correct answer for each statement that follows ? 3 6 10 18 100 294 857 8000 40000 48 000 120000 500000 1 million 2 million 3 million
    6. 6. Total amount of insurance claims (in billions of pounds) ? Number of schools damaged by the floods. Number of INXS fans who turned up at Sheffield City Hall expecting the concert to go ahead. Number of British homes currently at risk from flooding
    7. 7. Percentage of Hull’s population still living in temporary accommodation 9 months after the floods. Number of pupil days lost in schools in Rotherham Total number of household insurance claims. Number of millimetres of rainfall at Emley Moor, W. Yorks in June.
    8. 8. Bingo Eyes down for a full house.... <ul><li>£3 billion worth of insurance claims </li></ul><ul><li>857 schools were affected by the floods. </li></ul><ul><li>100 INXS fans turned up at Sheffield City Hall for a concert that was cancelled. </li></ul><ul><li>2 million British homes currently at risk from flooding. </li></ul>
    9. 9. Bingo Eyes down for a full house.... <ul><li>120 000 total household insurance claims following the floods </li></ul><ul><li>10% of Hull’s population still living in temporary accommodation </li></ul><ul><li>294 mm of rainfall fell at Emley Moor in West Yorkshire </li></ul><ul><li>48 000 pupil days were lost at schools in Rotherham </li></ul>
    10. 10. On Monday the 25 th of June 2007, just after 6am, heavy rain started to fall across Yorkshire...
    11. 11. 12 hours later, it was still raining...
    12. 12. 6 am
    13. 13. 8.30 am
    14. 14. 2.00 pm
    15. 15. 6.00 pm
    16. 16. With thanks to Tom Coulthard
    17. 17. Rivers broke their banks: the Don, the Sheaf, the Rother, the Ryton, the Hipper... Was this mainly a fluvial flooding event (from rivers) or a pluvial event (from rain)
    18. 18. What caused it ? <ul><li>25 th of June: torrential rain fell over a large area: the equivalent of the contents of over 20 Olympic sized swimming pools every second fell on the city of Hull </li></ul><ul><li>The 2 weeks before the 25 th were very wet, and the water table was close to the ground surface ( antecedent conditions ) </li></ul><ul><li>Why so much rain ? </li></ul>
    19. 19. The wettest June on record Source: Met Office
    20. 20. 20 - 30 000 feet high Jet Stream: aircraft pilots ‘Ribbon’ of wind – speeds of between 100 and 300 miles per hour Form where cold polar air meets warm tropical air. ‘Steer’ depressions What caused it ?
    21. 22. <ul><li>PFJS: moves from West to East Summer: normally veers North and leaves calmer HIGH pressure conditions over UK In 2007, Jet Stream stayed south </li></ul>What caused it ?
    22. 24. Forecast from http://www.metcheck.com
    23. 25. Why so much rain ?   <ul><li>The polar jet which steers our weather system was stuck further south than usual for the time of year, so we were more open to low pressure systems  </li></ul><ul><li>Warm air, so more evaporation from ocean </li></ul><ul><li>As a result, a month’s worth of rain fell in 24 hours in some parts of the country.   </li></ul><ul><li>Same again this year... </li></ul>
    24. 26. Why was this a hazard ? <ul><li>Something becomes a hazard when it does one or both of the following things: </li></ul><ul><li>endangers life and damages property or the environment </li></ul><ul><li>threatens human societies and their welfare </li></ul>
    25. 27. What is the flood risk ? Risk: “ The probability of a hazard occurring and creating loss...” Types: Atmospheric Hydrological Geological Biological Technological
    26. 28. Hazard Risk Equation <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Hazard x Vulnerability </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Risk = Capacity </li></ul>
    27. 29. Primary or Secondary ? Primary : Immediate – as a direct consequence of the hazard Secondary : Follows later – an indirect (but connected) consequence of the hazard.
    28. 30. Connections... My granny
    29. 31. Ulley Reservoir Dam near Rotherham <ul><li>Earth bank retaining wall was being eroded away as the dam overflowed </li></ul><ul><li>Dam was much fuller than usual </li></ul><ul><li>Water started to leak out, and ran down the surface of the dam wall </li></ul><ul><li>Landslide weakened the dam wall </li></ul><ul><li>Engineers said “not if, but when...” </li></ul><ul><li>120 million gallons of water... </li></ul>
    30. 33. What happened ? M1 was closed: costs thousands of pounds per minute to keep it closed Was closed at the end of August as well – why ?
    31. 34. iPernity – 5” video
    32. 36. Google Earth file – pulls in videos and images...
    33. 38. Resilience
    34. 39. Flood resilience <ul><li>Kitchen units made of steel rather than wood </li></ul><ul><li>Electrical sockets placed at higher level rather than the ‘usual’ level </li></ul><ul><li>Tiled floors </li></ul><ul><li>Raised foundations </li></ul><ul><li>Flood doors and barriers </li></ul><ul><li>Storage on high shelves </li></ul>
    35. 40. Flood Resilient Home
    36. 41. The resilient Kings Arms
    37. 42. Notice anything ?
    38. 43. 10 % of homes are built in areas at risk from flooding Flood defences of new buildings compound flooding downstream We tend to like living near rivers and coasts
    39. 44. “ They’re called flood plains because they flood...” Philip Eden Royal Meteorological Society
    40. 45. Who are the stakeholders ? <ul><li>The Environment Agency </li></ul><ul><li>The Police, Fire Brigade and Ambulance </li></ul><ul><li>The Met Office </li></ul><ul><li>The Army </li></ul><ul><li>The RAF and Coastguard Agency </li></ul><ul><li>Gold Command </li></ul><ul><li>Local council </li></ul><ul><li>Local churches </li></ul><ul><li>Red Cross </li></ul><ul><li>The Government </li></ul><ul><li>Local shops and businesses </li></ul><ul><li>Insurance companies </li></ul>
    41. 46. 3 policy areas to focus on: <ul><li>The annual spend on flood defences </li></ul><ul><li>Where and how to build new houses </li></ul><ul><li>Emergency response procedures </li></ul>
    42. 47. “ Britain’s biggest ever peace time rescue operation” Over 3500 people rescued by helicopters more used to rescuing people at sea...
    43. 48. 12 months on… (June 2008) <ul><li>More than 10,000 people are still unable to return to their homes after last summer's flooding, figures obtained by BBC Radio 5 Live suggest. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Councils in England confirmed around 5,000 households remained affected, but added many may not be on lists because they rented or stayed with relatives.” </li></ul><ul><li>A shortage of skilled workers, as well as problems caused by a cool, wet winter have slowed down repairs. </li></ul><ul><li>The worst affected area was Hull. </li></ul>
    48. 54. A flood hits the following businesses… Which one is able to open first... <ul><li>Bookshop </li></ul><ul><li>Fish and Chip Shop </li></ul><ul><li>Hairdressers </li></ul><ul><li>Carpet Shop </li></ul><ul><li>Thanks to Simon Oakes via Waterworlds blog </li></ul>
    49. 55. Flickr user: wip-hairport
    50. 56. Who benefits from flooding ? <ul><li>Look at the list below. Who is going to benefit ? </li></ul><ul><li>Plumbers </li></ul><ul><li>Plasterers </li></ul><ul><li>Electricians </li></ul><ul><li>Vehicle and equipment hire firms: dryers </li></ul><ul><li>Carpet fitters </li></ul><ul><li>Skip Hire firms... </li></ul><ul><li>Geography teachers ? </li></ul>
    51. 57. Waterproof lettuce ?
    52. 58. Waterproof letters FLOOD PLANNING 6 elements...
    53. 59. 1. Check your insurance cover, and where your policy is... There were 165 000 insurance claims after the floods.
    54. 60. 2. Know how to turn off gas, electricity and water. Flickr user: earthfromtheground, Amir. S
    55. 61. 3. Prepare a flood kit of essential items: a ‘ready bag’ <ul><li>Important documents e.g. Passport, driving license and </li></ul><ul><li>important phone numbers </li></ul><ul><li>Home and car keys </li></ul><ul><li>Toiletries and personal first aid kit </li></ul><ul><li>A wind-up or battery radio </li></ul><ul><li>Spare batteries </li></ul><ul><li>A torch or a candle and matches </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile phone </li></ul><ul><li>Cash and Credit cards </li></ul><ul><li>Spare clothes and blankets </li></ul><ul><li>Bottled water and any easy food, e.g. tinned food or biscuits . </li></ul>
    56. 62. 4. Know who to contact and how Flickr user: absolutwade
    57. 63. 5. Think about what you can move now. 6. Think about what you would want to move to safety during a flood.
    58. 64. The analysis started.... Professor Tom Coulthard Hull University Flickr: tuck 1981
    59. 65. Hull: hit harder than anywhere else... <ul><li>Hull built in basin – “like New Orleans” </li></ul><ul><li>Water has to be pumped into River Humber </li></ul><ul><li>Heavy rain meant that the river was already swollen </li></ul><ul><li>Pumps were not at sufficient capacity to remove all the water. </li></ul><ul><li>Following slides by Professor Tom Coulthard </li></ul>
    60. 66. What caused the 25 th June 2007 floods? <ul><li>Pumps and drains could not cope with volumes of water </li></ul><ul><li>Too much water falling on the city for the network of drains, sewers and pumps to cope with </li></ul><ul><li>Like a bath with the plug left in… </li></ul><ul><li>The water had no-where else to go </li></ul><ul><li>Were the pumps and sewers correctly designed? </li></ul>
    61. 67. <ul><li>Hull has the largest number of households and people affected by the summer floods for any one area in the UK. </li></ul><ul><li>Over 8600 households were damaged by the June floods, home to over 20 000 people. </li></ul><ul><li>Of these, 6 300 were forced to live in alternative accommodation with over 1400 people living in caravans. </li></ul>The immediate impact
    62. 68. Medium/long impacts: For Hull <ul><li>Council targets and infrastructure: </li></ul><ul><li>Cost > £100 million </li></ul><ul><li>Cost of £326 per resident. </li></ul><ul><li>Council largely self insured </li></ul><ul><li>Targets: Education, re-cycling, crime </li></ul><ul><li>House prices ? </li></ul>
    63. 69. Medium/long impacts for people: <ul><li>Temporary accommodation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Extended family - stresses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Split up homes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Caravans </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Health concerns </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mental - Physical </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Domestic issues </li></ul><ul><li>Schooling </li></ul><ul><li>How long will the legacy last? </li></ul>
    64. 70. No ‘Pluvial’ Flood Warning System <ul><li>EA Floodline only warns of River and Tidal flooding </li></ul><ul><li>No predictive system to forecast for the impacts of ‘pluvial’ flooding </li></ul><ul><li>Who is responsible for warning from these events? </li></ul>“ The Environment Agency provides flood warnings online 24 hours a day. From this page you can view warnings in force in each of our eight regions covering England and Wales. You can also search for your local area and its current warning status using the panel on the right. The information is updated every 15 minutes.”
    65. 71. Some conclusions...
    66. 74. Hazard Risk Equation <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Hazard x Vulnerability </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Risk = Capacity </li></ul>
    67. 75. Why are floods not natural hazards ? Flickr user: Chris Malcolm
    68. 77. http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/thepittreview/interim_report.aspx The Pitt Review Individuals Businesses
    69. 79. Have a go yourself http://floodsim.com... Can also be downloaded .
    70. 81. “ For every £1 further we can spend, we would be able to save the country £6 in repair costs.” Mark Tinnion Regional Flood Risk Manager Environment Agency
    71. 82. 2007 137 million people affected worldwide by flooding...
    72. 83. http://www.geography.org.uk/resources/flooding http://www.geography.org.uk/resources/2007floods/ http://www.geographypages.co.uk/junefloods07.htm
    73. 84. http://livinggeography.blogspot.com
    74. 85. Extra reading...
    75. 86. Acknowledgements <ul><li>John Lyon, Professor David Lambert and other GA colleagues </li></ul><ul><li>“ The Great Flood” – Martin Smith (2007) – published by At Heart Ltd and ‘The Star’ newspaper </li></ul><ul><li>Newspaper articles from newspapers: The Independent, The Times, The Guardian, Daily Mail </li></ul><ul><li>Dr. Simon Oakes, Bancroft School </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Tom Coulthard, Hull University </li></ul><ul><li>Ernie Savage – for inviting me... </li></ul><ul><li>FLICKR Users for images </li></ul>
    76. 87. Acknowledgements <ul><li>Environment Agency </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/subjects/flood/1867303/?version=1&lang=_e </li></ul><ul><li>The Met Office: Rainfall statistics </li></ul><ul><li>UKResilience website </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.ukresilience.gov.uk/response/recovery_guidance/case_studies/p2_3_10-y1_2_yandh_flooding.aspx </li></ul><ul><li>Images of Ulley and Catcliffe area by Mark Lomas (made available on Flickr) </li></ul><ul><li>Hazard pyramid by Dr. Fiona Tweed, Staffordshire University </li></ul>http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/seasonal/summer2007/index.html
    77. 88. Acknowledgements <ul><li>FloodSim simulation game: http://floodsim.com </li></ul><ul><li>BBC News website – particularly Have your Say </li></ul><ul><li>The Pitt Review (can be downloaded) </li></ul><ul><li>iPernity: can see the 5 minute clip of the Ulley Dam </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.ipernity.com/doc/outallnight/1167732/ </li></ul><ul><li>Flood Resilient Home website (Norwich Union) </li></ul><ul><li>Tom Austen of RIDO for his Flood Map using Google Earth </li></ul><ul><li>Stuart Lane article in ‘Geography’ (Vol. 93,2,2008) </li></ul>