Faulty pump adds to flood woes

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Residents were angry about missing sandbags and a faulty pumping station during the floods that hit Grangemouth yesterday afternoon.

Nervous householders stood guard outside their properties in Glensburgh Road, in Grangemouth’s old town area, just after 3pm as the water seeped ever closer – it’s advance not impeded by sandbags, which only arrived at around 3.30pm, or the nearby pumping station, which was not operating.

The station, which is supposed to activate automatically through a level switch, had to be turned on manually to pump away the floodwater and had to be supplemented by a mobile pumping unit which arrived on the scene just before 4pm.

Nancy Carsewell, who moved to Glensburgh Road a year ago, said: “They were locked out of the pumping station and someone had to go and get keys. They could have got the sandbags here earlier as well – it’s not as if they didn’t know this was going to be happening, it’s been forecast since yesterday.”

A long suffering Glensburgh Road resident said he was fed up telling Falkirk Council and Scottish Water about the flooding problems which happen year in, year out without anyone doing anything to solve them.

One person from Falkirk Council who was prepared for action was Councillor Robert Spears, who helped residents lay sandbags – once they arrived – at the kerbside.

Falkirk Council confirmed there was indeed a fault with the pumping station in Glensburgh Road.

A spokesman said: “A high tide at around 3.30pm yesterday, combined with a tidal surge in the Forth, caused some localised flooding at a number of locations that receded shortly afterwards.

“A number of crews were deployed across the Grangemouth area to prevent serious disruption caused by the water and the crews worked into the evening to ensure the water was dispersed safely.

“In the Glensburgh area of Grangemouth, we reacted quickly to the situation as it developed deploying our resources where they could be most effective. However, issues with the pumping system not operating as intended at this location could not have been foreseen.

“Police Scotland were asked to assist with traffic management at this site which allowed crews to focus on dealing with the problem safely and quickly. We were in regular contact with SEPA to ensure we had the most up to date information on projected problem areas and tackled these as a priority.

This was in addition to having a number of our staff out at key locations to regularly update areas of concern. We remain on alert as further high tides are scheduled for today and tomorrow and the council will respond as appropriate should any further situations occur.

Falkirk Council stated householders and businesses have responsibility for managing their own flood risk and encouraged residents in an area that has any potential to flood to register for SEPAs Floodline alerts at www.floodlinescotland.org.uk if they have not already done so.