Cheshire fire crews help out during the flooding in Cumbria

Cheshire firefighters, along with crews from specialist search and rescue teams and crews from other fire and rescue services, provided help in Cumbria during the extensive flooding across the region after the county took the brunt of Storm Desmond.

Staff from Warrington fire station, Widnes fire station and Congleton fire station were among the crew that went to Cumbria, along with personnel from International Search and Rescue team (ISAR).

Two fire engines, a rescue boat and a High Volume Pump were also sent to Cumbria.

The mission was to help in the efforts to rescue people from the devastating impact of the flood waters, and also to provide support to Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service.

Update - Sunday 6th December 2015

One of the Cheshire fire engines was sent to Penrith during the night on Saturday along with two staff from the Warrington crew to pump out a premises in Penrith.

Two other members of the Warrington crew, along with the ISAR team, went to Carlisle to use the boat in a mass evacuation.  In tough and hazardous conditions, the team rescued six adults and a child from a property, using the boat. Conditions were extremely hazardous with lots of debris in fast flowing water.

Just before lunch time on Sunday the ISAR team and staff from Warrington fire station worked alongside crews from Staffordshire fire and rescue service in Carlisle to evacuate properties in flooded streets adjacent to the river at the junction of Warwick road and Victoria road in Carlisle. The crews used boats during the rescue efforts.

Members of the Warrington fire crew also worked in the Eden park crescent area of Carlisle, where they evacuated and rescued two adults from a property using the boat. The crew also checked several other properties and occupiers to make sure that they were safe.  The photographs (above) show the Warrington crews working in Carlisle during the evacuation of two adults from their home.  

Over the weekend, the Cheshire crews rescued 12 people in total and also two dogs -  some of which was shown on ITV news on Sunday evening. 

View ITV news report (Opens in new window)

Update - Monday 7th December 2015

The river levels are dropping in Keswick, but the crews are still continuing their rescue efforts. The High Volume Pump is at Keswick Rugby Club today (Monday) pumping out water.

The photo on the right shows the High Volume Pump in action,  pumping out the water from the Rugby Club in Keswick.  Good progress is being made.

More than 2,500 homes are without power in Cumbria, so our fire crews are also spending a third day evacuating people from flooded homes.

The Cheshire boat will complete its final shift in Cumbria tonight between 6pm and 9pm, when the crew will be helping people in Carlisle.  The boat and its crew are expected to arrive back in Cheshire at midnight tonight. All other crews and the High Volume Pump will remain in Cumbria, continuing to help where needed.

Update - Tuesday 8th December 2015

Cheshire firefighters from Congleton Fire Station are working alongside colleagues from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service in Carlisle. They are using High Volume Pumps from both Services to pump out the basement of Carlisle Civic Centre which is filled with floodwater.

The basement measures 150m x 150m and was filled with water to ceiling height. The crews were pumping the water out into the adjacent pedestrian subway which was then pumped into the river by the Environment Agency.  

It's estimated that Cheshire firefighters alongside colleagues from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service and the Environment Agency removed 4.5 million litres of water from the basement. They will return to the Civic Centre in the morning to carry on pumping out water. 

Update - Wednesday 9th December 2015

Crews have been redeployed to Carlisle Civic Centre to continue clearing the remaining water from the basement and from the lift shafts.

The Congleton High Volume Pump team is currently pumping out the basement so electrical engineers can get in to restore power.

Update - Friday 11th December 2015

Our firefighters returned to Carlisle Civic Centre on Thursday morning to assess the building after two days of pumping water from the basement using the Service's High Volume Pump (HVP).

The crew then took the high Volume Pump to Carlisle Airport where it was decontaminated. Our crew, from Congleton, have been rotating staff throughout the operation and all personnel returned to Cheshire last night.

Last updated: Friday 11 December 2015

Related images

Basement after water had begune pumping out
Basement full of water
Carlisle civic centre
Cheshire fire crews rescuing people from their flooded home in Carlisle
Cheshire firefighters at Carlisle Civic Centre
Firefighters have returned to Cumbria Civic Hall to pump for water out of the basement
Firefighters inside the Carlisle Civic Centre
Firefighters inside the civic centre
Flooding in Carlisle as a result of Storm Desmond
The High Volume Pump in action,  pumping out the water from the Rugby Club in Keswick
The High Volume Pump which is stationed at Congleton FS
The river levels are dropping in Keswick
Warrington fire crews helping to rescue two adults from a house in Carlisle following the floods in the area
Warrington fire crews working in Cumbria during the extensive flooding across the region
Water being pumped away from the Civic Hall
Water pumped into the subway
Work is continuing at the Civic Hall