Thursday, November 30, 2006

Focussing on rain, wind and flood 

Let’s FOCUS on high winds (and indeed floods).

You may have noticed some excitement in the press about tornadoes in Britain. Well, this is not exactly news – I remember startling some visitors from Kansas way back in the 1970’s by telling them that the UK had more tornadoes per year than their home area did. There was a tornado in Milton Keynes in the early 19990’s that damaged the roof of my son’s school and there have now been serious waterspouts off Brighton two years in succession.

Not just Global Warming to blame – as TORRO (The UK Tornado and Storm Research Organisation) makes clear. We have been at risk a long time.

What we do lack is good information on the ground. So if a ‘freak wind’ blows up in your area you can report it to TORRO so it is added to their database. Just an extension of good FOCUS campaigning, really.

Actually we can do the same with floods. Thanks to the privatisation of the Water Industry in the dog days of Thatcher, a mass of local information on flood incidents was lost. If you do get a flood in your area your FOCUS team can get valuable data by taking photos of the maximum flood level. Offer copies to your local planning department and the Environmental Agency .This kind of evidence could be crucial for certain kinds of planning decisions….

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