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Storm Arwen

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Storm Arwen

Old 1st Dec 2021, 18:54
  #61 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Ninthace View Post
Living in a rural location, I have tried to add resilience but it is hard as systems become more complicated. If struck by a prolonged power outage caused by cold, I hope I have food for up to three weeks, a bit depends on how long the freezer lasts without power but it is in the garage and there is no heat in there. After that we are on tins and packets. The booze should last a bit longer.
Cooking is not an issue, I have 2 years worth of gas in tanks and the cooker does not need electric. The boiler is gas but needs electric to run it and and so no heat or hot water. The solar water heater needs amps to that would be off too.
I have enough wood to last at least one winter so we would be warm if we slept in the lounge. I have 2 large emergency lamps that can be recharged by the sun as a last resort. On their lowest power setting, which is still quite bright, each will last 48 hrs and they live in direct sunlight so they are always full. Water I can do very little about but I do have 3 butts full that could be filtered and boiled if they have not frozen solid.
Nithface
We have a similar thing in Yorkshire house, ie Gas central heating and hot water for kitchen and one house bathroom, but on suites on electrical emersion heaters and two coal / log stoves downstairs in lounge and dinning room. Also plenty of candles !

Cheers
Mr Mac
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Old 1st Dec 2021, 19:11
  #62 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Mr Optimistic View Post
I am sure it used to be colder than this in November, we didn't get an air frost until a couple of weeks ago. Tomatoes used to get hit by frost in early September, now they're still on the vine in November. Think we have got used to a milder climate and anything cold as used to be gets a special name and a place in folk memory.
The issue with Arwen wasn't the cold but the high winds which were pretty constant for over twelve hours (98mph recorded at Brizlee Wood radar) - not just power lines are down but whole strings of poles as well.
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Old 4th Dec 2021, 07:31
  #63 (permalink)  
 
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The focal point of criticism is Northern Powergrid. We have been told that, internally, the company was describing the situation in Durham as an emergency last Friday.

However, we understand the Durham and Darlington Local Resilience Forum’s Strategic Co-ordinating Group was not informed about this until the following Wednesday which was when they declared it a major incident.

North Durham MP Kevan Jones said: "Northern Powergrid have got major questions to answer, the main one being if they were told it was an emergency on Friday, November 26, why it took them until Wednesday the first of December to relay this information to the resilience forum."

John Hewitt, Chair of County Durham and Darlington Local Resilience Forum’s Strategic Co-ordinating Group, said: “When the storm hit, we were not made aware by Northern Powergrid that the damage caused to the power network would mean supplies would be affected for the amount of time they have been. We were informed that power could be restored within a short time frame and that it would not be necessary to escalate the situation. However, as soon as we became aware that some properties were going to be affected for a much longer time than was first anticipated, we took the decision to step up our response. Securing additional support from the military will enable us to continue carrying out our vital work to support communities over the coming days.”

Chief Fire Officer, Stuart Errington, Chair of the County Durham and Darlington Local Resilience Forum (LRF) said: “Once the LRF partners became aware of the extent and duration of the power outages, swift action was taken by all concerned to support our communities. A significant amount of local authority, fire and rescue, police and other resources are dealing with this incident.”
Do these people not have windows in their houses they can look out of? "We didn't do anything because nobody told us until Wednesday"? Unbelievable

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news...north-22355571
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Old 5th Dec 2021, 18:06
  #64 (permalink)  
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And, here comes the reprise .

However, it's the last paragraph from the Business Sec, now firmly established as being as disconnected from reality as possible, who must be the only person in the UK not to realise, that, had the damage occurred to the same extent in London / Home Counties / Sarf East. by now it would have long been fixed, plus numerous Cobra meetings (Boris attendance optional of course) and every available military unit deployed.

Severe weather warning for UK as Storm Barra set to arrive on Tuesday | Extreme weather | The Guardian
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 07:38
  #65 (permalink)  
 
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The Teesside local gazette is now revelling in "Storm Barra" due this week and threatening chaos with snow and wind.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 08:13
  #66 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Krystal n chips View Post
And, here comes the reprise .

However, it's the last paragraph from the Business Sec, now firmly established as being as disconnected from reality as possible, who must be the only person in the UK not to realise, that, had the damage occurred to the same extent in London / Home Counties / Sarf East. by now it would have long been fixed, plus numerous Cobra meetings (Boris attendance optional of course) and every available military unit deployed.

Severe weather warning for UK as Storm Barra set to arrive on Tuesday | Extreme weather | The Guardian
It seems to me the disgusting state of affairs where people, in the 21st century, are without power for more than a week after a weather event that whilst serious, doesn't get close other catastrophes elsewhere in Europe and further afield is routed in the privatisation of the power infrastructure system which means that whatever the businesses might wish to spin, priority number one is to maximise profits for their shareholders, and pay obscene amounts to senior executives in return for delivering profits.

There needs to be some middle ground here. Wholly public ownership rarely seems to work efficiently, whilst on the other hand full blooded privatisation gives us the situation we have today in the energy sector, whether that be at the distribution / infrastructure level, or the retail level. The privatised water companies are similarly more interested in profits than investing in infrastructure, hence the scandal of dumping sewerage into rivers and the open sea untreated.

The UK system of providing basic utilities is broken and the next government needs to look seriously at fixing it.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 08:34
  #67 (permalink)  
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" The UK system of providing basic utilities is broken and the next government needs to look seriously at fixing it "

Otherwise known as re-nationalisation...which would be logical, but, sadly, as you say. would deprive umteen shareholders and execs of their income stream in the form of dividends and bonuses....so unlikely to happen thus allowing the corrosive effects of privatisation to continue.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 09:32
  #68 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Krystal n chips View Post
" The UK system of providing basic utilities is broken and the next government needs to look seriously at fixing it "

Otherwise known as re-nationalisation...which would be logical, but, sadly, as you say. would deprive umteen shareholders and execs of their income stream in the form of dividends and bonuses....so unlikely to happen thus allowing the corrosive effects of privatisation to continue.
Or much tighter regulation. Fines from the regulator achieve little, they are often fairly derisory, and in can case the companies adjust their prices to recoup the fines. I don't like the idea of total nationalisation since nationalised businesses, including national treasures, don't perform that well either in terms of spending money wisely. Where is the middle ground?
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 09:53
  #69 (permalink)  
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Well-paid people justify their pay levels by reference to the high levels of responsibility they bear. Well, let them be fined/imprisoned when they fail massively. That's what responsibility is.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 12:29
  #70 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by c52 View Post
Well-paid people justify their pay levels by reference to the high levels of responsibility they bear. Well, let them be fined/imprisoned when they fail massively. That's what responsibility is.
Problem is that the "person" fined is the limited company, the directors, unless wilful negligence or corporate mis governance is involved hide behind the company they are directors of so get of pretty well scot free.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 14:15
  #71 (permalink)  
 
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ATNotts
Tend to agree with you on Directors. All the nasty little sh*ts who were at Carillion are resurfacing in other companies with their "bright ideas". As for state owned infrastructure, again I think there is a halfway house, but you need to make sure that the people running it are not consumed with greed as that negates the benefit. As for the national treasures I take it you mean the like's of the saintly NHS. Well I would strongly agree with you about that, and after having to spend 6 hrs last night / this morning in A & E to see a doctor, when I had a suspected DVT (post operation issue potentially), who gave me one blood thinner tablet, and arranged a scan for this morning I tend to agree with you. At least I did not have a DVT. However 6hrs of observation did allow me to witness some interesting staff / management or lack there of actions. Wheel chair bound people on their own (Covid restrictions) not being asked about water or bathroom breaks. A poor older women wet herself and the floor as nobody had seen her asking to use the WC. That sort of thing is a symptom of an organization which has lost site of the little picture and rank poor care. I speak as someone who's Mum was a Sister in the NHS in early 60,s and returned to the NHS in the late 70,s so I know a little of what I speak in that regard.

Cheers
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 14:24
  #72 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Mr Mac View Post
ATNotts
Tend to agree with you on Directors. All the nasty little sh*ts who were at Carillion are resurfacing in other companies with their "bright ideas". As for state owned infrastructure, again I think there is a halfway house, but you need to make sure that the people running it are not consumed with greed as that negates the benefit. As for the national treasures I take it you mean the like's of the saintly NHS. Well I would strongly agree with you about that, and after having to spend 6 hrs last night / this morning in A & E to see a doctor, when I had a suspected DVT (post operation issue potentially), who gave me one blood thinner tablet, and arranged a scan for this morning I tend to agree with you. At least I did not have a DVT. However 6hrs of observation did allow me to witness some interesting staff / management or lack there of actions. Wheel chair bound people on their own (Covid restrictions) not being asked about water or bathroom breaks. A poor older women wet herself and the floor as nobody had seen her asking to use the WC. That sort of thing is a symptom of an organization which has lost site of the little picture and rank poor care. I speak as someone who's Mum was a Sister in the NHS in early 60,s and returned to the NHS in the late 70,s so I know a little of what I speak in that regard.

Cheers
Mr Mac
Mr Mac,

Going off of a tangent a little, I have had to spend more hours that I would have liked earlier this autumn on a ward of a major Birmingham hospital when my mother was very ill, and not expected to pull through. Thankfully she has! Although the NHS is said to be understaffed I was amazed at the number of people milling around on night shifts, wandering aimlessly or just staring into their phones. I'm sure this isn't the situation on A&E but to my eyes, on that ward, it give a whole new meaning to the word "busy" and the term "rushed off their feet".

Glad to hear you didn't have DVT, or hopefully and other clots running around anywhere else you might not have wished them to be.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 15:38
  #73 (permalink)  
 
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ATNotts
Yes all good to go for Storm Barra ☹️ Have dispatched Mrs Mac to woodshed for more logs / Smokeless fuel ( I am on light duties) and she,not being daft, bribed our two neighbours teenage sons to bring in suitable amounts of Smokeless fuel and logs to our cellar. So we await Barra due here mid day Tuesday, which is a bit of a bugger as I was hoping to have Catheter taken out which may not be possible if snow is like Arwen.

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Old 6th Dec 2021, 17:02
  #74 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ATNotts View Post
It seems to me the disgusting state of affairs where people, in the 21st century, are without power for more than a week after a weather event that whilst serious, doesn't get close other catastrophes elsewhere in Europe and further afield is routed in the privatisation of the power infrastructure system which means that whatever the businesses might wish to spin, priority number one is to maximise profits for their shareholders, and pay obscene amounts to senior executives in return for delivering profits.

There needs to be some middle ground here. Wholly public ownership rarely seems to work efficiently, whilst on the other hand full blooded privatisation gives us the situation we have today in the energy sector, whether that be at the distribution / infrastructure level, or the retail level. The privatised water companies are similarly more interested in profits than investing in infrastructure, hence the scandal of dumping sewerage into rivers and the open sea untreated.

The UK system of providing basic utilities is broken and the next government needs to look seriously at fixing it.
I have the impression that it is similar to the old snow-clearing dilemma. Emergencies aren't frequent, so there is not a large number of "emergency response " personnel on the books. In France where I live, natural events - major flooding, forest-fires, avalanches, snow-storms, land-slides, loss of electricity over wide areas due to storms - are fairly common and everybody from councils up, has an action-plan in place and are able to draw on enough people to fix things in an acceptable time.

One local example ( I live at 1 500m in the Alps ): a few years ago we had a heavy snowfall - probably 20 cm of heavy wet snow- on the night of June 1st. Since all the trees were in leaf, this meant that there were enormous numbers of line breakages because the snow sat on the new leaves and then the branches broke and brought down the cables. The snow happened around 03:00, we had no power during the day, and it was restored around 19:00 that evening. Given that this situation was probably repeated in numerous neighbouring valleys, I found that very impressive.

Given the obvious change in weather patterns, UK utilities are going to need to update their planning.

Last edited by Tartiflette Fan; 7th Dec 2021 at 09:22.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 17:24
  #75 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan View Post
I have the impression that it is similar to the old snow-clearing dilemma. Emergencies aren't frequent, so there is not a large number of "emergency response " personnel on the books. In France where I live, natural events - major flooding, forest-fires, avalanches, snow-storms, loss of electricity over wide areas due to storms - are fairly common and everybody from councils up, has an action-plan in place and are able to draw on enough people to fix things in an acceptable time.


Given the obvious change in weather patterns, UK utilities are going to need to update their planning.
Correct on both statements.

The UK has never coped with adverse snow fall, certainly at lower and urban levels because it's always been relatively infrequent (quick comparison being as anybody who was there will confirm, snow in Germany, RAF stations shut down chaos reigns, outside the wire, life carries on as usual) but whenever the UK does get bad weather, various agencies don't seem to co-ordinate their responses. Could be wrong here of course.

And of course, the cost of snow clearance vehicles sitting idle for months at a time makes bean counters shudder in horror, contingency planning isn't part of their understanding of balance sheets.

Flood defences have improved, in some areas, but again, years of neglect mean it's going to be a long long time to catch up. Thanks in no small part to funding cuts to local authorities, it's become rare to even see a drain cleaner vehicle now so it takes no imagination because the evidence flows happily in front of people when excessive rain falls (or should that read "rain event" now the preferred term) to realise the drains are blocked due to not being cleaned as they once were.

And when it all gets tooo much...quick call to the M.o.D and hey presto, call in the military..problems solved !
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 17:36
  #76 (permalink)  
 
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I'll admit to being a tad concerned when the radio announcer warned that Storm Bara was on its way, following Arwen, since everybody knows that Welsh-named storms should never be underestimated.

Much to my relief, the TV weather forecast later clarified that a Hebridean island was involved instead.
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Old 6th Dec 2021, 17:36
  #77 (permalink)  
 
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I think one of the biggest issues is that a lot of the infrastructure was so old/neglected that it has made the effect of the storm worse - equipment so old that parts aren't available, rotten poles which snapped at the base, etc

It's not so much the lack of planning to cope with the emergency, but lack of investment in basic infrastructure.
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Old 7th Dec 2021, 12:44
  #78 (permalink)  
 
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DavidReidUK, that's so true especially because if it was called Bara it would be raining bread!
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Old 7th Dec 2021, 14:23
  #79 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by LowNSlow View Post
DavidReidUK, that's so true especially because if it was called Bara it would be raining bread!

Not bread but Whisky, Barra is the Island were Whisky Galore was filmed

Last edited by scr1; 7th Dec 2021 at 18:17.
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Old 7th Dec 2021, 15:17
  #80 (permalink)  
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Taken from the BBC site report on the current storm.

" On Tuesday, Boris Johnson said the UK had not had a storm as violent as Storm Arwen, which hit in late November, for a long time.Asked whether it was acceptable for people to be without power for as long as they had been, he replied: "No I don't think it is. Too many people have spent too long without power.""I think that we need to learn the lessons for the future and make sure that we have better resilience against storms of this kind. It's likely to happen again, we've got to make sure we protect people against it,"

Always nice to see stock phrases being uttered... as per usual.

However, it would be very interesting to learn how he would define " better resilience " given a number of posts on here have already outlined many of the issues that were exacerbated by the storm in question.
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