‘Stop our flood hell’

Hastings Avenue in Bispham on Saturday.
Hastings Avenue in Bispham on Saturday.
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NEIGHBOURS have called for clearer notices to be given to households in areas at risk of flooding.

Households on Hastings Avenue, Bispham, saw water rise to just an inch from their doorsteps on Saturday in downpours.

Hastings Avenue in Bispham on Saturday.

Hastings Avenue in Bispham on Saturday.

They say they were left puzzled as to who to turn to for help after calls to Blackpool Council, fire staff and United Utilities brought no obvious help.

Gerard Maxwell, 54, a resident on Hastings Avenue, said: “We rang [the council] but they said it was nothing to do with them. And we rang United Utilities and nobody was willing to accept responsibility.

“We can’t have it happen again. We need contact names and numbers.”

A sluice gate was opened on Saturday afternoon, allowing flood water to drain away. But residents have said they are still not clear on who made this happen and who to call next time.

Blackpool Council and United Utilities have now moved to reassure residents and ensure people know where to turn in an emergency.

A spokesman for United Utilities said: “Our role is to ensure the public sewer has capacity to cope with extra flows during storms.

“Local authority highway teams look after their own road surface flooding incidents.

“To help residents on this occasion we will step in to speak with council engineers so they know the right numbers to call for future events.

“We did have several emergency crews in the area over the weekend but the incident was never passed to our control room for response.”

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United Utilities yesterday sent out an officer to review drainage of the Bispham area and now plans to work with Blackpool Council on the matter.

Coun Fred Jackson, Blackpool Council cabinet member for streets, said: “A resident of Hastings Avenue contacted us on Saturday morning concerned that their road was flooded.

“We notified United Utilities which is responsible for the maintenance of the sewers under the road.”

Blackpool Council has also recommended for households to purchase sandbags in case of flooding.

For more advice, visit: direct.gov.uk

Click here to read how The Gazette reported the original story:

Downpours lead to flooding misery