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Flood threat warnings played down by chiefs

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 03, 2014

River Trent

River Trent

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WARNINGS that thousands of families in Burton are at risk of flooding over the coming years have been played down by environment chiefs.

West Midlands Friends of the Earth has produced figures showing the number of homes deemed to be at risk of flooding in an attempt to make the Government sit up and take notice a problem it believes needs urgently addressing.

The group said more than 1,750 homes in the town were considered to be at significant risk of flooding.

This figure was questioned by the Environment Agency, however, who said the area’s flood alleviation scheme had done much to reduce the threat.

Burton was left largely unscathed compared to other parts of the country which were devastated by flooding during the first two months of 2014, but the town’s vulnerability was exposed at the back end of 2012, when homes were flooded and the A38 closed as a result of the deluge.

A handful of residents living near the dual carriageway were left homeless months on.

Friends of the Earth campaigner Chris Crean said: “Flooding is devastating for anyone that is affected by it and as a country we must do much more to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

“Prevention is better than cure, so it’s vital the Government redouble efforts to stop climate change becoming worse.

The Environment Agency admitted that although floods in the town are rare, the impact on those that are affected can be ‘devastating’.

It said it was working to find a solution for residents most at risk.

A spokesman said: “Although there is protection from flooding from the River Trent, there remains the risk of flooding from smaller watercourses and drainage systems within the town.

“For example five properties off Derby Road in the Clay Mills area of the town were affected by flooding from a drain in July 2013 and November 2012. We are working with relevant local authorities to find a solution.”

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