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Whaley Bridge Update - Tuesday 6 August

A fifth night of pumping has taken place to reduce the level of water in Toddbrook Reservoir, Whaley Bridge.

Emergency Services, partner agencies and volunteers have continued to work around the clock to reduce the water to a safe level to protect the homes, businesses and community of Whaley Bridge.

Fire service high volume pumps (HVP) from Derbyshire and across the UK have been working around the clock alongside 12” civil engineering pumps and to date have been able to reduce the water level by a total of 7.8 meters.

Over the last 24 hours, pontoons have been put in place on the reservoir to float the pumps so that pumping can continue as the water level recedes. This takes away the need to continually relocate pumps to ensure the efficient and effective removal of water. Pumping will continue until engineers and specialists deem the dam safe.

Derbyshire’s Chief Fire Officer, Terry McDermott and Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Gavin Tomlinson have been overseeing the fire and rescue service’s response to the incident at Toddbrook Reservoir and have both paid tribute to the residents of Whaley Bridge for their resilience, the army of volunteers helping to keep people working on the ground fed and watered, all the emergency services responding from Derbyshire and beyond and the partner agencies all working tirelessly to resolve the incident. 

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Gavin Tomlinson said: “We hope to have the water at a safe level late this morning or by lunchtime, to allow specialist engineers to inspect the dam and feedback about its safety.  This inspection will have to take place before any decision regarding the return of residents can take place.

“The priority of the incident has always been the safety of the residents of Whaley Bridge and they have been incredibly resilient throughout the evacuation.  Fingers crossed for them and hopefully we can give them some good news very soon.

A third residents meeting is scheduled for 5pm today at Chapel High School, Chapel-en-le-Frith.  At 6.30pm a business surgery will be held at the same venue.