Highways teams are continuing to work round the clock clearing roads and responding to the severe weather in the Yorkshire Dales.
North Yorkshire County Council staff are in the process of carefully inspecting bridges and highways to ensure they are safe for public use following what has been described as a “very rare weather event” by the Met Office, with rainfall rates, hailstones and lightening experienced at levels considered rare in the UK.
About 100mm of rain fell yesterday in parts of Richmondshire, with the Leyburn, Bellerby and Grinton areas particularly badly hit.
The Met Office has issued a further yellow weather warning for today (Wednesday, July 31), with lightning and further heavy downpours expected, which may fall in areas already affected by the severe weather event of yesterday evening.
North Yorkshire County Council is working very closely with all emergency services and other partners to ensure a well-coordinated response.
The B6270 near Cogden remains closed after a landslip and highways officers are at the scene establishing the scale of the impact and looking at the best course of action. In the meantime a road closure and diversion remain in place in the interests of public safety.
Grinton Moor Bridge has collapsed, therefore the Grinton to Leyburn road remains closed.
There are no known properties above the youth centre but council staff are aware that farm and military access may be required and are at the location considering options.
Highways officers are also at the scene of a collapsed wall at the Pheasant Pub at Harmby.
This morning the following roads have been closed:
- B6270 Downholme to Grinton
- A6108 Downhole to Halfpenny House
- C106 Grinton to Reeth
- B6270 Grinton to Reeth
- Riverside Road, Richmond
North Yorkshire County Council is also supporting the fire service by managing traffic in areas where properties have flooded, including several homes near Brentwood Close on the A684 at Leyburn.
A small number of homes were last night left without water and several without electricity.
North Yorkshire County Council’s Executive Member for Highways, Cllr Don Mackenzie said: “We’re working to ensure the safety of affected roads and reopen those that are safe as quickly as possible.
“We’re aware the damage to the B6270 and its closure near Cogden means motorists will have a fairly lengthy diversion and would like to reassure everyone that we’re working with experts to find a solution to this issue as quickly as possible.
“We are also working hard to remove mud and other debris which has been washed onto roads during downpours and would urge motorists to remain vigilant and drive with caution.”
Nigel Smith, head of highway operations for North Yorkshire County Council said: “Last night we had inspectors out from the beginning of the severe weather event checking flooding hotspots.
“Working with the emergency services and mountain rescue we took steps to check on vulnerable people and closed some roads due to flooding, as a precautionary measure in the interests of public safety.
“We also identified rest centres in case they were required and we are pleased to say they weren’t.
“With the other emergency responders, including Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team, we coordinated the rescue of seven people who were trapped on highways by the sudden flooding.
“This morning we have deployed all our available resources to check known areas of flooding, or road and bridge damage, and also to ensure that the remainder of the highway network is safe for the travelling public to use.
“We will have greater detail once all of the inspections are complete and we can then assess next steps.”
Nigel Smith urged people not to drive past road closure or flood warning signs.
“It’s very difficult with water on the surface of the roads to determine how deep the water is, or, indeed, if the road is still there beneath the surface water,” he said.
“Our crews are currently assessing the safety of the roads and if they are safe to pass then we will reopen them as soon as possible. While the roads remain closed we would ask people to seek alternative routes.
“In respect of the landslide and the bridge, we are working with experts and structural engineers to determine what remedial work needs putting in place and to reinstate those routes as soon as possible.”