Flooding incidents in northern and western Lancashire

Between 5.30pm on Wednesday 22 and 2.30am on Thursday 23 November, Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service attended 109 flooding incidents caused by heavy rain across Lancashire.

UPDATED 23/11/17, 2.50am
The Service received over 400 calls after heavy rain caused flooding mainly in Lancaster, Morecambe, Thornton, Poulton, Blackpool and Over Wyre. Over 70 people were rescued along with over 20 horses, a cat and a dog.

The majority of these incidents have not involved a life risk but where there have been residents and animals at risk, our crews have attended and helped out. Some of the more serious incidents have included helping move vulnerable people out of their homes, moving animals that have been trapped and pumping water out of houses where the flood water was affecting the electricity.

The M6 was closed between junctions 34 – 36 in both directions and trains North of Preston were cancelled throughout the night.

At this moment the A6 at Galgate remains closed in both directions and diversions remain in place in Devonshire Road, Blackpool. A number of minor roads and residential streets remain close in Cleveleys.

27 residents were evacuated from their houses in Galgate. They have been housed in local pubs overnight.

The flood gates around Garstang and Catterall were opened and coped well with the rain that fell.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service worked with Lancashire Police, local authorities and the Environment Agency to co-ordinate effort to minimise disruption and protect the public.

During widespread flooding the Fire and Rescue Service is going to be very busy and will prioritise its attendance to emergencies where there is a risk to life.  Be assured though, that if you are trapped by floodwater or your home is severely affected, call 999, ask for the Fire Service and you will be rescued.

  • Severely affected properties will have flooding that is knee-deep. Water that is ankle- deep will not normally be considered as requiring fire and rescue service assistance. Even in severe cases of flooding we may not be able to remove the flood water if the surrounding area is flooded, with nowhere to pump the water to.
  • If your home is flooded turn off your electrics.
  • LFRS is not able to assist with flooded roadways – contact your Local Authority Highways Department.
  • LFRS is not able to assist with flooded gardens.
  • Avoid travelling where possible.  Motorists are advised not to attempt to drive through flooded roads or fords. The water is often deeper than it looks and it may be moving fast.  If people do need to use their cars, drivers are advised to allow extra time for travelling, slow down and test their brakes after driving through floodwater.
  • People – especially children – should not attempt to walk through flooded areas.   Even in shallow, fast-moving water, people can be swept off their feet and there may be hidden dangers such as open drains.

Cleaning up after a flood:

  • Damaged or wet electrical appliances must be isolated or unplugged.  Don’t use electrical items until an electrician checks them.
  • Residents who have suffered flooding should make sure all electrical circuits are fully dried out and checked by an electrical engineer before they are switched back on. Where floodwater has affected the electrics in a property, Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service can provide assistance with pumping out.
  • Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service can assist the public where floodwater has entered properties but can only pump out water over six inches deep.  We may be able to assist commercial properties but a charge of approximately £250 per hour per appliance may be made.

A downloadable leaflet from the Electrical Safety Council with advice and guidance on what to do after a flood has subsided can be downloaded here.