A storm surge coinciding with high spring tides caused the waters of the Humber River to rise and flood a cement works, where the water rose as high as 3 m. A petrochemical site (46146), a chemical terminal (46144), and an oil terminal (46149) were also flooded that day.

Following weather-watch warnings, the plant prepared for the flood although it was not officially counted as being in a flood hazard area. Non-essential staff were sent home while on-duty operators were moved to safe areas. Mobile equipment was placed on blocks, the electrical power supply was cut off, and oil and other combustibles were confined.

Despite these precautionary measures, the site’s facilities (control systems, electrical systems, compressed air systems, buildings, cement kiln) were seriously damaged by water and mud.

Cleaning operations lasted for several weeks, as did the power outage. Production at the site did not resume until the spring of 2014. In addition, up to 400 contractors had to be called in to perform repairs. In all, the many repairs cost €10m and included:

  •  Replacing the primary and compression substations.
  • Installing a new control room.
  •  Rewiring of several kilometres of high- and low-voltage circuits.

In addition, a maximum of cables and electrical equipment was placed higher up. The flood defence works (dykes) along the Humber River were repaired.

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