Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

FLOODING DEFENCES UNDER DISCUSSION; Variety of Schemes Being Looked at by Agency

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

FLOODING DEFENCES UNDER DISCUSSION; Variety of Schemes Being Looked at by Agency

Article excerpt

Byline: KRYSTA EAVES and MIKE BLACKBURN

THE Environment Agency said it is still "investigating" possible flood alleviation schemes in Stockton after the area was hit by some of the worst floods in recent memory.

Homes and businesses were left counting the cost when the region was drenched with a month's worth of rain in just 24 hours in September.

A special report on the flooding to go before Stockton Council's cabinet next week estimates that 150 properties and businesses were affected.

But the exact number may never be known, as not all residents report flooding.

Worst affected were communities along Lustrum Beck and residents living in Norton near Billingham Beck.

The strategic highway network, including the A66, was also affected leading to wide-spread traffic disruption.

In the aftermath, Stockton Council chiefs pledged to "ask serious questions" of the Environment Agency (EA) over why flood defences promised more than a decade ago for Stockton have still not been built.

The EA has now been working with Stockton Council to discuss future flood protection.

An EA spokesman said: "We are currently investigating possible flood alleviation schemes for the Lustrum Beck area, looking at the levels of protection that could be provided by different schemes and determining how much flood defence funding each option could attract.

"We are working with Stockton Council throughout this work with the aim of finding out whether it would be possible to deliver a wider scheme that offers a higher standard of protection for more properties, rather than a smaller one which offers limited protection."

Meanwhile Stockton Council is looking at developing rapid response measures so the authority can "do all in its power to protect properties at risk".

Such measures could include additional equipment to pump water and portable barriers for areas where a risk of flooding is known. …

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