Carpenders Park resident's anger over sandbag availability amid flood alert

Watford Observer: 'Trying to find sandbags amid flood alert is an absolute joke' 'Trying to find sandbags amid flood alert is an absolute joke'

A Carpenders Park resident said trying to find a sandbag to protect her property from flood damage has been "an absolute joke" after she failed to obtain one from local councils.

Celia Welch, 59, said water has been "creeping" towards her Penrose Avenue home after weeks of heavy rainfall.

Bank worker, Mrs Welch, said she was sent "all over the place" trying to obtain a sandbag to prevent her home from flooding.

She added: "This whole thing has been really upsetting and my husband and I have been trying so hard to get a sandbag. We went to Hertfordshire County Council and they sent us to Three Rivers District Council.

"Trying to get a sandbag in Hertfordshire is an absolute joke. I want a sandbag to protect my property and it’s been so stressful trying to find one.

"We are pensioners and all our lives we’ve been working to have a home. Any water damage would affect my insurance and it would affect if we wanted to move because who would want to buy a property that is flooded?"

After days of searching, Mrs Welch and her 62-year-old retired husband, John, sought help from Rickmansworth Fire Station, who provided the couple with sandbags.

Mr and Mrs Welch have installed the water deterrents outside their home in the hope the flood does not encroach on their driveway any further.

Mr Welch added that the couple have experienced flooding on their road since June last year as the drain outside their bungalow does not filter the water properly.

Mr Welch, a Penrose Avenue resident for seven years, said: "The water often just sits on top of the road and the whole road and pavement has become flooded in the past, making the need for sandbags all the more urgent.

"When a van comes down our road water comes down our driveway and we’re obviously unhappy and worried because we live in a bungalow, which is quite low."

Simon Hoggett, spokesman for Hertfordshire County Council, said it is up to individual districts to decide whether or not to issue sandbags and that, ultimately, it is the responsibility of the homeowner to protect their property.

Mr Hoggett said: "Some districts have chosen to issue sandbags to residents when necessary. This is entirely discretionary and they have no obligation to do so, and those that do have various criteria.

"At the end of the day, however, the householder is responsible for protecting their own property and a trip down the builder merchants may be the easiest way.

"That being said I know that both the Environment Agency will help in severe environmental flooding situations and our highways team will help if the flooding was coming off the road."

Kevin Snow, spokesman for Three Rivers, said district councils do provide support and advice for residents in the event of emergencies, but he added that flood bags can be purchased from DIY shops and other suppliers.

Comments (11)

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3:41pm Sat 11 Jan 14

Anyvacancies says...

Do not think 59 & 62 qualifies you as pensioners. Early retirement I think!
Do not think 59 & 62 qualifies you as pensioners. Early retirement I think! Anyvacancies
  • Score: 12

3:46pm Sat 11 Jan 14

Anyvacancies says...

You can buy 50 sanbags from S.G.Baker online for £55.20 not difficult.
You can buy 50 sanbags from S.G.Baker online for £55.20 not difficult. Anyvacancies
  • Score: 14

5:13pm Sat 11 Jan 14

RussianDolly says...

Prevention is better than cure! They know they could get flooded, have seen the water creeping closer and did nothing!! Make your own!!!
Prevention is better than cure! They know they could get flooded, have seen the water creeping closer and did nothing!! Make your own!!! RussianDolly
  • Score: 9

7:51pm Sat 11 Jan 14

Sean22 says...

Travis Perkins in Rickmansworth sell them amongst other flood items.
Travis Perkins in Rickmansworth sell them amongst other flood items. Sean22
  • Score: 10

9:10pm Sat 11 Jan 14

fenton1972 says...

you live on a hill. get a grip
you live on a hill. get a grip fenton1972
  • Score: 5

12:41am Sun 12 Jan 14

Honest Rog says...

Blimey, not much milk of human kindness in the above comments, more like vitriol. WTF has their age got to do with this problem that appears to be caused by an inefficient storm water gully outside their home?
Blimey, not much milk of human kindness in the above comments, more like vitriol. WTF has their age got to do with this problem that appears to be caused by an inefficient storm water gully outside their home? Honest Rog
  • Score: -5

9:27am Sun 12 Jan 14

not a regular says...

"who would want to buy a property that is flooded?"

Erm... You did, love.
"who would want to buy a property that is flooded?" Erm... You did, love. not a regular
  • Score: 4

3:19pm Sun 12 Jan 14

Anyvacancies says...

I was only pointing out that Mrs Welch said they were pensioners, which they are not, and like all left wing opinion they implied this was why they should get free sandbags, rather than picking up the phone and ordering some. Glad to see the observer has relegated this silly story where it needs to be of no interest. No need to use foul language either.
I was only pointing out that Mrs Welch said they were pensioners, which they are not, and like all left wing opinion they implied this was why they should get free sandbags, rather than picking up the phone and ordering some. Glad to see the observer has relegated this silly story where it needs to be of no interest. No need to use foul language either. Anyvacancies
  • Score: 3

11:10am Mon 13 Jan 14

garston tony says...

I sympathise with anyone who lives in a property that is affected by flooding, a lot of people have faced awful situations the past few weeks let alone throughout history.

But what is this age we live in where people need to blame someone else all the time? I agree with the other posters who are basically saying stop moaning about the local authorities and take responsibility for your own home
I sympathise with anyone who lives in a property that is affected by flooding, a lot of people have faced awful situations the past few weeks let alone throughout history. But what is this age we live in where people need to blame someone else all the time? I agree with the other posters who are basically saying stop moaning about the local authorities and take responsibility for your own home garston tony
  • Score: 6

7:16pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Hairy Hornet says...

Not exactly a resourceful couple are they? I would like to think that if you work in a bank you have the nous to be able to google the word "sandbags!. There is plenty of choice. Or were they assuming its the council who are obligated to provide them, hence the time they wasted trotting about from office to office.
As well as thinking its" an absolute joke" they probably think its "disgusting"!
Not exactly a resourceful couple are they? I would like to think that if you work in a bank you have the nous to be able to google the word "sandbags!. There is plenty of choice. Or were they assuming its the council who are obligated to provide them, hence the time they wasted trotting about from office to office. As well as thinking its" an absolute joke" they probably think its "disgusting"! Hairy Hornet
  • Score: 5

12:28am Tue 14 Jan 14

dontknowynot says...

we never had a problem getting sandbags before we joined the EU and it seems to have got worse since we let in all those Romanians, its all down to there being a village in Romania called "sand" and the new EU rule that they can only be called sandbags if they originate from the region.
Sorry about that but you now might have more luck asking for granular rock bags.
Vote UKIP you know it makes nonsense
we never had a problem getting sandbags before we joined the EU and it seems to have got worse since we let in all those Romanians, its all down to there being a village in Romania called "sand" and the new EU rule that they can only be called sandbags if they originate from the region. Sorry about that but you now might have more luck asking for granular rock bags. Vote UKIP you know it makes nonsense dontknowynot
  • Score: -1

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