An independent report into the flooding that devastated 100 homes in Moreton and forced others to be evacuated has concluded that authorities were too slow to share information and react to rising water levels.
Commissioned in the wake of the September floods that saw the Arrowe Brook break its banks and pour into homes around the Millhouse Lane, Tern Way and Wastdale Drive areas of the town, the report by AECOM, concludes: ‘Information about the scale and severity of the flooding was slow to surface and reach key decision makers’ and ‘misconceptions about roles and responsibilities of the different agencies impacted on the effectiveness of the flood incident response’
Local Councillor Chris Blakeley (Conservative, Moreton West & Saughall Massie) said: “This report confirms the views of the people most affected – that the response of the authorities was too little, too late and that, had authorities and agencies worked together instead of alone, some of the damage to property and distress to residents could have been avoided.”
The report was triggered by a clause in the Flood and Water Management Act (2010) which requires an authority, in this case Wirral Council, to review whether it has exercised it’s statutory functions effectively.
Councillor Blakeley added: “Before 2010, it is unlikely this kind of report would ever have been commissioned, let alone been published, and I hope that the Council will make the full report available on its website. Thanks to this Act of Parliament, residents can now see how, sadly, they were let down by the various authorities and agencies failing in their duty to work together quickly and effectively
“It is now up to councillors to ensure that the authority implements the improvements required. We’ve seen too many reports like this in Wirral in the past where, instead of ‘lessons learnt’, we have had ‘no further action’.
“For the people at risk of further floods in Moreton and elsewhere in Wirral, doing nothing is no longer an option.”