Ottery floods one year on: emergency plan call

PUBLISHED: 16:00 30 October 2009 | UPDATED: 10:53 18 June 2010

OTTERY woke up to devastation a year ago today, after an overnight deluge of hail and rain left the town flooded.

OTTERY woke up to devastation a year ago today, after an overnight deluge of hail and rain left the town flooded.

More than a month's worth of rain and enough hail to fill the Millennium Dome twice over fell in the space of a few hours, causing £1million of damage and scores of residents homeless.

Amid the deluge of misfortune heaped upon Ottery in just a few hours on October 30, 2008, its community spirit remained intact, and now officials want residents to play their part in formulating an emergency plan for the town- should disaster strike again.

This time last year beleaguered householders were left to shovel compacted hail and ice from the doorsteps of their flooded homes, and while kind-hearted townsfolk rushed to their aid, it was 24 hours before the cavalry arrived in the form of district and county council diggers and dump trucks.

Town councillor John Harding, part of a task group set up to ensure Ottery is as prepared as possible for future flooding woes, said a locally created emergency plan for the town will be vital in helping stricken victims quicker.

He said: "We believe we need to get a plan together, there was one in some form 12 months ago, but it didn't do nearly as good a job as it should have done for residents.

"The people of Ottery are going to fix these problems, not people in Exeter or London. We will be going out to the public and asking for their help in generating this plan.

"A lot more data and information is available to us now. Information on what we should do, where we should go in case of emergency will be available at the town council offices.

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