Report into November 2017 flooding released

Monday, August 12, 2019

An overview report of the flooding which struck Lancashire in November 2017 has been published by Lancashire County Council.

An intense rain storm travelling from the Irish Sea coast at Blackpool north-easterly to the Lancaster area, caused extreme downpours on the night of November 22/23.
Over 900 homes and other premises were flooded across the area, with 436 homes internally flooded and 70 households evacuated overnight in the village of Galgate.
The weather station at Hazelrigg (Lancaster University) recorded 73.6mm of rain over 24 hours, the highest since weather observations began there 50 years ago. For comparison, Storm Desmond in December 2015 recorded 59.7mm of rain during a 24 hour period.
The report, which has been compiled by the council as the Lead Local Flood Authority, found the rainfall event was highly damaging as it overwhelmed all natural and constructed drainage networks in its path, causing extensive surface water and river flooding.
It also dislodged soil/silt and vegetation which blocked drainage networks that might otherwise have coped with the surface water.
Many roads, including those used for critical emergency access, were obstructed by flood water, and bowwaves from passing traffic caused standing water to enter private property and houses close to roads.
The report details the flooding issues which were reported to the drainage authorities, including the county council, the district and city councils, United Utilities plc and the Environment Agency, because of the incident..
It also updates where work has since taken place or where investigations are still ongoing to understand whether improvements can be made to help manage future flood risks.
The report aims to help improve flood resilience in the affected areas.
Already the county council, together with its partner organisations, has developed an improved understanding of the way incident response, community engagement and data collection activities are interlinked.
This has led to improved procedures to deal with future flooding events and improve flood infrastructure in the county.
County Councillor Stephen Clarke, lead member for flooding, said: "The council and its partners have been investigating the many locations that flooded in the November 2017 floods since the first reports came in of how damaging the storm was, and in some cases there is still a lot of work to be done to find worthwhile improvements in how drainage is managed.
"I am very grateful to the many people who have provided detailed information about their experiences during this flood event, which is all very useful in helping the drainage authorities to understand what happened on the night.
"It helps to inform us of how we might work together to reduce flood risk in the future.
"I am very aware that other flood events have happened on other dates and in other places around Lancashire, where people are still hoping for advice about their flood risk. The investigations and Section 19 reports for those events are still being worked on."
Anyone who may have been flooded and has new information which could reduce the risk of flooding can contact the council email at or call 0300 1236780.
The full report can be viewed at

Notes to Editors

As a Lead Local Flood Authority, Lancashire County Council, has a duty to investigate flooding in accordance with Section 19 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010.
Lancashire County Council is responsible for maintaining 4,300miles of highways including roads, bridges and pavements.
Gullies are cleaned out regularly in priority areas where there is a history of problems being caused by blockages.

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