Serve On Community Resilience Team rally for flood affected communities in Yorkshire
Today a volunteer Community Resilience Team from Serve On responded to requests for assistance from the Tadcaster Emergency Response Group. They arrived this morning to assist residents and authorities following the flooding that has affected much of the area over the past few days. Within hours of arriving the team got stuck in, cleaning out a restaurant and pressure washing layers of mud from buildings that had been deposited following the deluge.
Tomorrow morning the Serve On Flood Rescue Team will be deploying by boat to villages just outside Tadcaster that are reportedly totally cut off by floodwater, to assess residents needs, assist the community and provide vital information back to the emergency services. Serve On will also be working with Team Rubicon to establish a coordination capability to help manage other volunteer groups converging in the area. The team will augment local water rescue assets and provide the manpower to support recovery activities.
This evening the shocking news came that Tadcaster Bridge had collapsed under the pressure of the water. In the collapse a gas main had been ruptured and the Serve On Community Resilience Team have been assisting the North Yorkshire Police and local authorities to evacuate residents to a safe distance.
This will be the second time the team have deployed to a UK disaster in as many weeks, with volunteers deploying to Cumbria to clear houses and businesses to get residents back on their feet before Christmas.
The Serve On Team are working in partnership with Team Rubicon on the ground and Skywatch in the air. As with the deployment to Cumbria B&Q are supporting Serve On and the residents of Yorkshire with a donation of tools and equipment to be used in the recovery effort. The team capabilities include swift water rescue, water incident management, strategic and operational management, communications expertise, health and safety expertise, disaster management and air reconnaissance.
This is the second official UK deployment for Serve On’s Community Resilience Teams, following their deployment to Cumbria and a deployment of the International Response Team to the earthquake in Nepal earlier this year. The Team is formed of volunteers trained in flood response and urban search and rescue who can respond to crises or disaster in the UK, in conjunction with local emergency services.
If you would like to join Serve On or find out more about the deployment to Cumbria you can get in touch at www.serveon.org.uk or follow their progress on Twitter this week (https://twitter.com/SERVE_ON) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/serveonIRT/).