Govt: Soldiers should help tackle floods

#1
HERE
The Telegraph said:
Soldiers should help tackle floods, says review
By James Kirkup and Tom Peterkin
Last updated: 3:55 PM BST 25/06/2008

Military personnel should help lead the response to major floods, a Government review has said.

Recommending that flooding should be treated as a national threat on a par with terrorism, Sir Michael Pitt's review of last summer's floods calls for a major overhaul of emergency planning.

The review concluded that the UK is ill-prepared for a repeat of last years' heavy rains, which brought chaos to Yorkshire, the Humber, the Midlands and south-west England.

Almost 5,000 people forced from their homes last year have still not been able to return.

Sir Michael said it was "shameful" that so many people are still in temporary accommodation. He also attacked electricity, gas and water companies for leaving hundreds of thousands homes cut off when the floods came.

He said authorities and the public were taken by surprise by the "sheer scale" of the flooding, and called for a fundamental overhaul of emergency planning.

"We were not well prepared last summer for the scale of flooding that took place," Sir Michael said.

A Cabinet Committee should be set up dedicated to tackling the risk of flooding, just as there are bodies preparing for terror attacks and disease epidemics.

And the military should be brought into flood planning, the Pitt Review concluded.

It said: "The Ministry of Defence should identify a small number of trained Armed Forces personnel who can be deployed to advise [civilian leaders] on logistics during wide area civil emergencies."

Households also have a greater responsibility to prepare for possible flooding, Sir Michael concluded.

All homes should have a "flood kit", the study said. The pack would include personal documents, insurance policies, emergency contact numbers, a torch, a wind-up radio, a first aid kit, blankets, a mobile phone, wet wipes or anti-bacterial gel and rubber gloves.

The Government should also set up training course and information services to "encourage individuals and communities to be better prepared and more self-reliant during emergencies."

The floods turned attention to the question of whether it is wise to build houses on flood plains.

Sir Michael said that such construction should be "the absolute exception," but should not be banned because of the wider importance of building new homes.

That anyone buying a home on a flood plain should be given a very clear warning about the potential risk.

All home buyers information packs should be required to carry detailed information about flooding risks, he added.

And building regulations should be revised for refurbishing or building new homes to make them more resilient to flooding.

Last year, ministers faced accusations that they had led the budget for flood defences dwindle. Sir Michael found that the £800 million-a-year flood defence budget for 2010 to 2011 was "about right" but said that money should be spent more wisely.

The review's 92 recommendations include:

:: The Met Office and Environment Agency should have a joint centre to improve their ability to forecast, model and warn against flood threats;

:: Local authorities should collate and map drainage systems - which contributed to much of the problems last summer, as a significant proportion of the floods were caused by surface water systems;

:: The Environment Agency should work with telephone companies to roll-out an "opt-out" telephone flood warning scheme, in which at-risk people are automatically signed up, even those who are ex-directory;

:: In order to ensure people get back into their homes as quickly as possible, the Government should publish monthly summaries of the progress of the recovery, including the number of households still displaced.
... obviously the gubmint has decided that when not on ops or training, the troops need extra activities to fill their time :roll:
 
#2
What about all the Doleys who get paid to be available for work - this looks like work - they are available!!

They should be contacted and if they do not turn up then no dole.
 
#3
Erm...did anyone think to mention the incredibly experienced BRT's?
 
#4
Of course the Army should do all this. There's lots of them isn't there?

Maybe it would be possible for Sir Michael Pitts to visit the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, and elsewhere, to colect the names of volunteers.

This guy (Pitts) sounds like another zaNULiarbour stool pigeon producing in report what the soviets require.
 
#5
rockape34 said:
HERE
The Telegraph said:
Soldiers should help tackle floods, says review
By James Kirkup and Tom Peterkin
Last updated: 3:55 PM BST 25/06/2008


It said: "The Ministry of Defence should identify a small number of trained Armed Forces personnel who can be deployed to advise [civilian leaders] on logistics during wide area civil emergencies."
... obviously the gubmint has decided that when not on ops or training, the troops need extra activities to fill their time :roll:

My Bold, I suspect that even a small number may be unavailable, after all what's a small number, 3,30,300?
 
#7
In a sangar,somewhere in the world in the not to distant future...

"Right,listen in!sorry lads.Today we are not,I repeat NOT,going out to fight the Insurgents.Half of Wales is flooded so we are now needed on flood defence duties instead!
RSM,Get them on that plane"
 
#8
They're talking a very small number of loggy types to sit and help with the planning of an op - mainly because military planning saved OP OUTLOOK from turning parts of the UK into something resembling the third world last summer.

Not aware of any changes to defence policy on this issue though - glad to see Sir Michael listened to what we told him! ;-)
 
#9
jim30 said:
They're talking a very small number of loggy types to sit and help with the planning of an op - mainly because military planning saved OP OUTLOOK from turning parts of the UK into something resembling the third world last summer.

Not aware of any changes to defence policy on this issue though - glad to see Sir Michael listened to what we told him! ;-)
Would you want to be that loggy? Without the ability to implement any decision, being overruled by overstressed civvies. The Army's a package not a couple of individuals.
 
#10
I tend to agree that the Army should be used in the event of such emergencies. After all, there's a lot of kit that's standing around, doing very little.

Given the commitments in op theatres, obviously it would be down to the TA to fill the gap. So it's just a question of arranging that the emergencies start on a Friday night and are over by Sunday afternoon.

Some of the other ideas in the statement are half-baked, though. Such as the suggestion that new-builds shouldn't be on flood plains unless there's a housing shortage :? - surely it's not beyond the bounds of engineering expertise to raise the ground beyond flood levels before building on it.

And the idea of making new-builds flood-resilient. A bit like making all new homes wheelchair-accessible with the result that carpets get wet when it rains and all houses are made more expensive with generic modifications (many in the face of generations of construction development) when only a few need specific mods.

92 recommendations! They need three. Don't build below potential water level. Maintain drains, ditches, culverts. Provide satisfactory provision for surface water run-off from new developments, the full cost to be borne by the developer, not just dumped on the local authority.

I'd also have the developers involved in existing flood plain disasters made responsible for providing flood barriers for the blighted properties that they've made their fast bucks on.
 
#11
It happens already. I have been the loggie who attended a gold/ silver training session with all of the other relevant agencies. It is quite depressing to see the way some of the civilian agencies work. It is also an eye opener when they expect to be able to walk into a military camp and get soldiers out assisting them. They couldn't understand that if they did do that they couldn't just task soldiers and more importantly they couldn't plan on us being around as we have other places to be!
 
#12
"I tend to agree that the Army should be used in the event of such emergencies. After all, there's a lot of kit that's standing around, doing very little."

Sadly thats not the case - I really wish it were though.

For those of you with insomnia, try a search for JDP2-02 - the manual which outlines our doctrine for the use of the armed forces inside the UK. Its Unclas and available on the internet.
 
#13
CQMS said:
jim30 said:
They're talking a very small number of loggy types to sit and help with the planning of an op - mainly because military planning saved OP OUTLOOK from turning parts of the UK into something resembling the third world last summer.

Not aware of any changes to defence policy on this issue though - glad to see Sir Michael listened to what we told him! ;-)
Would you want to be that loggy? Without the ability to implement any decision, being overruled by overstressed civvies. The Army's a package not a couple of individuals.
When the whole of Severn Trent were doing rabbit in spotlights impressions, the overstressed civvies were bloody glad someone in cabbage patch was giving them guidance.

The regard that the armed forces are held in within Local and Regional Resilience Forums is not to be underestimated. The Joint Regional Liasion Officers and their supporting MLO teams (BRT - or elephants' graveyard!) work through out the year to establish rapport and understanding with their Blue light colleagues in the Brigade area. That they have seen best and worst practice and can advise the "overstressed civvies" on other options or points to consider makes their position invaluable.

It is actually probably the one true "TA" role, as the ability to see both sides of the fence has to come from experience of both. A regular used to "command" would be like a bull in a china shop.

Funnily enough it is not just in Logistics that this makes a difference, but in comms, coordination, understanding of how others work. One factor that is often overlooked is that blue light services have less time to train. Most NHS trusts work at capacity, and since they are the leads on teaching Major Incident Medical Management System (MIMMS) this has a knock on effect. MLOs become a source of knowledge and can support/guide and assist as necessary. Since they also have a direct line to the military cell/JRLO at Gold, they can pass critical information/messages that are accurate, in the correct context and timely.
Maps in the Military cell are often used by other cells who don't have the practice or familiarity in their ops room use.
 
#14
It happens every time York floods.

2 Sig Regt end up working 8 hour shifts sandbagging, and they all are confined to camp whilst off shift.
 
#15
jim30 said:
For those of you with insomnia, try a search for JDP2-02 - the manual which outlines our doctrine for the use of the armed forces inside the UK. Its Unclas and available on the internet.
I've got insomnia, but a Google search reveals 9 hits - 2xARRSE, 1xRumRation, a list of holsters, 3xpages in Japanese, 1xMexican, 1xRussian and a brake disc.

Then again, there's more SECRET stuff on the net than there is UNCLAS, or so it would appear.
 
#16
5000 people almost froced from their homes? Of those 5000 people, how many attended a local home coming parade? How many attend a memorial service on November 11th?

Why don't local councils invest in appropriate measures to stop flooding? Perhaps they should be making hesco walls along the river bank? :roll:

I'll even put all that aside if they paid me a decent wage. Until then, get filling those sandbags traffic warden.
 
#17
putteesinmyhands said:
jim30 said:
For those of you with insomnia, try a search for JDP2-02 - the manual which outlines our doctrine for the use of the armed forces inside the UK. Its Unclas and available on the internet.
I've got insomnia, but a Google search reveals 9 hits - 2xARRSE, 1xRumRation, a list of holsters, 3xpages in Japanese, 1xMexican, 1xRussian and a brake disc.

Then again, there's more SECRET stuff on the net than there is UNCLAS, or so it would appear.
Tah Dah!!!

PDF at bottom of page after blurb
 
#18
Nightrained said:
5000 people almost froced from their homes? Of those 5000 people, how many attended a local home coming parade? How many attend a memorial service on November 11th?
You could equally ask, "How many were wives and family of soldiers on ops?" or "How many were ex-servicemen/women?"

Nightrained said:
Why don't local councils invest in appropriate measures to stop flooding? Perhaps they should be making hesco walls along the river bank? :roll:
While being quite happy to have a dig at councils for cash wastage, having once worked in the relevant department, I've also got to defend them (a bit). Many councils seem to be a fault for not ensuring that their surface water drains are clear of debris. Money for this tends to reallocated to higher-profile things (Stress counselling for failed asylum-seekers etc). But part of the problem is the way that development is organised. Apart from the sheer stupidity of building in areas of known flood risk, developers can build a new housing estate without too much worry about where the run-off water goes. Provided that their drains meet a particular standard and connect properly into the existing sewerage network, the council is obliged to adopt the estate. It doesn't matter that the existing sewerage wasn't designed to accommodate more and more housing estates. The cost of increasing the size of the drains would have to be borne by the council tax payers via increased Council Tax and this would be political suicide. Instead, the council assesses the risk of flooding on the likelihood of a "1 in 50 year" storm. Unfortunately, weather records don't go back very far, so the frequency of "1 in 50 year" storms could be miscalculated - it wouldn't be beyond the bounds of possibility to have such storms three years running, for instance.

Hesco is a temporary construction, the godsend of military ops, but wouldn't be much cop as a levee in many of Britain's flood plains (it would gradually sink). Better to save up a bit longer and put proper flood defences in, perhaps, though more people will get flooded in the meantime (and perhaps the savings will end up being spent on something else).

Nightrained said:
I'll even put all that aside if they paid me a decent wage. Until then, get filling those sandbags traffic warden.
Evidently spoken as someone who has yet to step on the property ladder. My house is at the top of a 'kin great hill, but I'd still be prepared to fill sandbags, for free, for those who are at the bottom (figuratively speaking, because even there, they're not at risk of flooding).

You should have learned about teamwork by now. Surprisingly, it doesn't just happen in the Army, though it does tend to require a disaster for civvies to be motivated into pulling together.
 

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