RAF Assist Whaley Bridge Dam Collapse

RAF Chinook taking off for Whaley Bridge Dam repair
Credit: RHL Images from England

An RAF Chinook has been assisting with the Whaley Bridge Dam repair operation.

What Happened to Whaley Bridge Dam?

Whaley Bridge Dam is connected to Toddbrook Reservoir in the Peak District. On Wednesday night, the dam partially collapsed forcing an evacuation of 1,500 residents from the village of Whaley Bridge. 

The reservoir holds 1.3 million tonnes of water and authorities took no chances, as the worst-case scenario could see the village completely flooded by the mighty volume of water. Surrounding main and local roads have been closed along with rail services being affected. 

How is the RAF helping at Whaley Bridge Dam?

An RAF Chinook has been assisting mechanical engineers tasked with repairing the elevated dam by dropping 400 tonnes of aggregate to the repair site. The Chinook flew in from RAF Odiham locate din, Hampshire. The Chinook is carrying 1-tonne bags of aggregate (a mixture of sand, gravel and stone into the dam repair). The purpose is to stop or at least contain the flow of water through the damaged part of the dam.

It is expected that the Chinook will be in constant use throughout the day (02/08/2019). It arrived at the scene at 05.00am. Once the aggregate has been loaded into the affected area, the RAF helicopter will drop more aggregate over waterways feeding into the damaged area to slow the flow of water. 

The UK Armed Forces are often deployed in natural disasters in the UK and abroad, in this instance, their specialist equipment is crucial in curbing the amount of damage that could be inflicted on the local Derbyshire community. 

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