Meetings to be held to learn lessons on flooding
COMMUNITIES worst affected by the recent flooding are being urged to come together with key agencies to see if any lessons can be learnt.
Special drop-in meetings have been arranged at Braunton on Thursday January 3 at the Parish Hall from 12noon to 7pm, and at Bishop Tawton Village Hall on Friday January 4 from 3pm to 7pm.
A similar event is also being considered for Combe Martin some time in the new year.
The meetings have been organised by Devon County Council and the Environment Agency with the support of district councils, the Police, fire and rescue service and South West Water.
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They will give authorities the opportunity to gather information about the recent flooding.
Residents are being encouraged to bring along photographs or video footage taken during the flooding.
Alternatively these can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The meetings will also enable local people to speak directly to staff from local authorities and agencies to raise any concerns or issues they have.
In the past month there have been eight drop-in events in the county relating to flooding incidents in November.
Councillor Stuart Hughes, chairman of the Devon Flood Risk Management Partnership and the Devon County councillor for Highways and Transportation, said his heart went out to families whose homes have been flooded.
He added: "While the mop up operation will clearly take some time and more rain is expected, experience from both the July and November flooding incidents shows just how important it is for the worst affected communities and key agencies to get together quickly to look at exactly what happened and see if there are lessons for the future."
Residents are being advised that their property is flooded, they should call 999 and ask for the fire service to help pump the water out.
Householders should also contact their insurer, who will provide temporary accommodation if needed.
The district council can also help with the removal of damaged goods and may be able to provide sandbags.
Devon County Council is working hard to get the road network and drainage systems cleared and back in operation. In the case of widespread flooding the major road networks will be prioritised.
Anyone with any major concerns should contact the highways team on 0845 155 1004 or out of hours on 01392 383329 to speak to the Highway Operations Control Centre.
Concerns can also be logged at www.devon.gov.uk/roads
Further advice and for information on the flood warning service, including river levels, call Floodline on 0845 988 1188 or visit the Environment Agency's website www.environment-agency.gov.uk