Employees from Kier, a leading infrastructure services, buildings and housing & developments group, were quickly deployed to Whaley Bridge in Derbyshire to activate an emergency drawdown plan at Toddbrook Reservoir on behalf of client, the Canal & River Trust.

The response by Kier, its supply chain, the RAF and emergency services led to water levels being reduced by 10.7m to date, resulting in the situation being declared safe and residents allowed back home.

55 employees from Kier and its supply chain have worked around the clock on site since the beginning of the emergency on Thursday 1 August, working alongside the Trust, emergency services and RAF.

Overall, they installed 11 12inch submersible pumps and over a kilometre of associated piping. They also removed three weirs, provided 700 tonnes of stone for the RAF to drop using the chinook helicopter and 400 tonnes of grouting.

Additionally, they installed numerous roads and access points, including a new road which ran from one side of the reservoir, allowing water pumps to be installed and maintained.

The emergency scheme was led by Eddie Quinn, director at Kier Regional Civils, who said: “The situation at Whaley Bridge was tense and at sometimes dangerous. I’m very proud of our team and supply chain for quickly coming together to help the Canal & River Trust and residents in the area. Working together, we quickly got the first water pumps into service and have been able to pump water out of the reservoir quickly.

“Reacting quickly has highlighted our ability to support our clients in their times of need, utilising our expertise regardless of the timing or breadth of project. It has been heart-warming to see the various organisations, as well as the local community come together during this time and we’re so pleased that residents are able to get back into their houses.”

Richard Parry, Canal and River Trust chief executive, said: “We would like to thank Kier and its supply chain who have reacted very quickly to this emergency and worked tirelessly since last Thursday to reduce water levels and stabilise the dam.”

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