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  • That's the worst I've seen it in 20 years, the council did make an effort to clear the drains regularly after it flooded badly there a few years ago.

    Sure, and they should. My point was that the existing drainage, no matter how clear, is obviously inadequate for rain like this. Underpasses like the one at Worcester Park should get a special project to greatly improve the drainage there (and then keep it clear, which is easier if there's more capacity, anyway). It's not rocket science.

  • This is not that simple as you might think: what event are you preparing for? There is a question if the underpass should be open at all times (massive drainage/water retention system - ££££) or we can accept it being closed once in a while. What is the future? Should we expect more of events considering change of climate? Add tight council budget, now affected by Covid, and the works like that by no surprise are at the bottom of the to do list.

  • Thanks, as it happens I know quite a lot about how council funding works and about constructing drainage. Most underpasses are very old and were built in more innocent times. The fact that the shit show of Abrogation of Government since at least 2010 has perversely and wrongly devastated councils' finances means that one needs to make the case for what has to be funded all the more forcefully, obviously alongside far more meaningful work on climate chaos. Any investment here will save enormous amounts later. There are obviously other local projects on that list, but building good drainage is a bread-and-butter issue, and, as I said, absolutely not rocket science. It's similar to flood protection in the North in that it's simply ridiculously underfunded (and again, at the same time it is far more important to remove/reduce the causes of such uneven weather at source, not that European governments are really doing that). London boroughs get roughly £3-4m (varies quite a lot and is higher for some) for street infrastructure work a year, which may sound like a lot but is actually not very much compared to the backlog.

    If the underpass can't be open at all times, barriers need to be installed that are closed when it's flooded and the flooding is expected. It's not acceptable, no matter how dozy drivers may be, that there is the prospect of them getting caught in this sort of situation. It's different with the German driver fussballclub posted--he was driving on a flooded road for quite a long time before he foundered, as opposed to the very short distances that such underpasses cover, effectively like flooded fords, when conditions on the streets leading up to them are clear. Where the hazard is very much unlike conditions surrounding it, and it's unclear how deep the water is, drivers and others need to be actively prevented from driving into it.

    Good and safe public infrastructure is a public right, and politicians must not be allowed to get away with utter inaction in the face of problems like this. If you don't tackle problems, they only become more and more expensive as time goes by.

  • The underpass closes itself once the first few dickheads have driven into it and are bobbing around waiting for emergency services to fish them out. Problem solved.


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