Yesterday’s very heavy cloudburst over Walsden and Todmorden resulted in 19mm of rain falling on a very concentrated area in just 15 minutes. In 24 hours, the total rainfall was over half of the monthly average for July.
The sheer volume and intensity of water coming down from the hills led to drains in part of the town being overwhelmed, causing localised flooding.
The Council, the community and other organisations are all working hard on the clean up. Yesterday evening, teams from Calderdale Council swung into action straight away and worked tirelessly through the night to deal with the immediate after-effects of the flooding. Sweepers were out clearing the roads and footpaths from 6pm to 3am, Highways staff were working to reduce the impact on roads, and structural engineers visited affected properties to make sure they were safe. The strength of the community once again shone through, with local residents pulling together and doing everything they could to help each other.
Flood damage led to the closure of one road – the A6033 Rochdale Road in Walsden / Todmorden – and particularly significant damage to the carriageway at Kershaw Road just above Walsden train station. The main A6033 road has now re-opened. Council staff are out on site working on the recovery with Network Rail and utilities companies. The main damage to properties is sewage, flood water and silt in cellars and the ground floors of some homes. National Rail are still reporting disruption to train services in the area – keep updated at National Rail – service disruptions.
Teams are out in Walsden and Todmorden today, continuing with the clean-up. Sweepers and gully cleaners are out in force; bulky waste collections are taking place to remove flood-damaged items; Council staff and volunteers are visiting households in the area to find out the full impacts of the flooding. The Council is handing out cleaning materials to affected residents. Clean up kits are also available from the Customer First centre in Todmorden and by calling the Council on 0845 245 6000 – anyone who needs help or advice should also use this number.
Calderdale Council’s Leader, Cllr Tim Swift, said:
“I’m really impressed with how quickly and tirelessly Council staff, local people and other organisations are working on the clean up. I’d like to thank everyone for all the effort they have made to deal with the effects of such an intense burst of rain.
“A multi-million pound investment has been made in main river defences through Todmorden, but it’s very difficult to prevent flash flooding along hillside streams and culverts as occurred yesterday. Nevertheless the Council and our partners, including the Environment Agency, remain committed to working with local communities to make homes and businesses as safe as possible from flooding.”
When floods hit, there are simple things that people can do to stay safe and help themselves. Advice is available on the Council’s website: Flooding – be prepared. When there is standing water on the roads:
- Drive slowly and sensibly ndash; or drive around it if it’s safe to do so
- It might be darker than usual, so put your lights on
- Make sure your windscreen wipers are working
- Make sure your tyres are blown up properly and have a sufficient tread
Other useful information:
What to do in a flood(external link) | What to do after a flood(external link)|