Page 14 - Issue 68 Online
P. 14



      . . . AND BEYOND

          ecember 23rd 12:00 midday, the duty
          pump at Glen House Pumping Station
     Dstarted up. Little did I know that it would
      run almost continuously for the next 91 hours.
      The forecast was awful, and the land saturated
      from a very wet month. I ran extra pumps to
      lower the main drain by 30cm.  I then travelled
      to the pumps at Purls Bridge and lowered the
      level by 30cm. I was out again at 19:30, the
      water level at Common Bridge was already
      15cm higher, with both Purls Bridge pumps       Purls Bridge on Christmas Eve
      running. Off to Welney, checking where drains
      crossed roads to see how things were looking.
      The drain levels were rising steadily and at Glen   Christmas morning, 07:00, Glen House and the
      House later that evening, four pumps were   level had dropped 38cm, all four pumps were
      running. With huge amounts of water coming   still running, each one in turn was stopped just
      into our system, all the District pumps and their   long enough for a quick service. During this
      associated machinery were running – no more   operation, the drain rose by 8cm. A tour of the
      could be done.                        District showed no blockages and Purls Bridge
                                            was 25cm lower. It looked like the worst was
      Christmas Eve, Glen House 07:30, all four pumps   over.
      running, still vast amounts of water in the drain.
      The level had risen by 70cm since the previous   I recorded 376 pumping hours
      afternoon but the four pumps were holding it   in four days, that’s about 1.23
      steady. Unfortunately, the weedscreen cleaner   million tonnes of water pumped
      broke down. This machine clears the grille that
      protects the pumps from ingesting the rubbish   out of the District.
      and vegetation debris that comes down the
      drain. I repaired the hoist motor and the ropes   Boxing Day, 07:30 and three pumps were
      and hoses that control the hydraulic grab. As the   running at Glen House, the level dropped
      light was fading, I visited Purls Bridge. Here the   overnight by a further 15cm. Purls Bridge had
      pumps were holding the level steady, a full 56cm   gone up by 32cm, the pumps tripping out during
      higher than yesterday. After adjustments to this   the night, probably due to birds striking a power
      weedscreen cleaner, I had both the stations in   line.
      some semblance of order.

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