Headland flood sparks emergency planning for future incidents

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COUNCIL bosses are set to meet with emergency services chiefs to discuss access plans to a historic area of Hartlepool following floods which saw it cut off from the rest of the town.

Treacherous weather conditions last week saw the main entrance to the Headland, on West View Road, flooded leaving the area isolated and chaotic to access, with queues of cars being directed to alternative routes by police officers.

The scenes have sparked bosses at Hartlepool Borough Council to request a meeting between ambulance service, fire brigade and police chiefs to discuss emergency plans should such a situation arise again.

Alastair Smith, the council’s assistant director of neighbourhood services and emergency planning lead, said: “The flooding across the North-East last week was as a result of the highest tides for 50 years, but Hartlepool did not suffer as much as some neighbouring towns.

“It did, however, result in some flooding in Hartlepool, including the main entrance to the Headland, and this is something which we will be discussing with the emergency services and other key organisations in the very near future.”

The storms on December 5 left West View Road almost 3ft under water closing the road to traffic.

Around 5pm police eventually allowed cars to access the Headland across the rugby field and up the bank to Old Cemetery Road and onto Thorpe Street, one at a time.

And for a short time, cars were allowed passage through the Brus Tunnel once the rugby field had become too boggy.

West View Road was re-opened at around 9pm.

The battering winds and rain also caused chaos in other parts of the town with a section of Stockton Road being closed, from Westbourne Road to the Burn Valley roundabout, due to a fallen chimney stack, several trees being blown down and the roof of High Tunstall College of Science suffering damage which saw the school closed for two days.

RAF helicopters were also drafted in to move sea defence blocks from the sea front at Seaton Carew to the banks of Greatham Creek which had burst as a result of the weather.