Floods cause damage amounting to millions each year. Not only complete streets are flooded but also public supply facilities such as pumping stations, sewage treatment plants, water production and distribution plants.
In addition to the extensive and costly clear-up work becoming necessary, above all the failure of important supply and disposal facilities is a danger for people.
Maximization of flood protection facilities
Flood protection facilities are dykes, walls, retention tanks, mobile facilities and dams across valleys. Mostly shores and individual objects are protected.
Technical flood prevention is no universal remedy, a full concept must rather be characterized by economical aspects. The expected prevention costs must be in an appropriate relation to the eventual damage rectification.
An example is the Danube syphon of the Stadtwerke Ingolstadt. District heating lines and two double casing pipes for hot water and heat which lie one over the other run inside the syphon. The syphon entrance was equipped with flood-proof manhole covers in spring 1999, before the flood catastrophy, which could not yet be foreseen at that time. The investment costs amounted to 10.000,- DM. In May 1999 the flood height on the syphon entrance was 1.5 m. The flood-proof manhole covers prevented a damage at the amount of abt. 100.000,- DM.
A well thought-out overall concept
The water seeks its way through everywhere. It is not only the rain water and rising rivers but also the rising groundwater level that has to be integrated into the considerations of flood prevention. Furthermore, the landscape and access to shores must be preserved. It is necessary to suit stationary equipment and dismountable solutions to one another.
Requirements on floodable and mobile flood protection equipment
Products and plants for flood protection must meet very high requirements:
- individual construction and workmanship suitable for the specific application
- easy-to-handle products as unskilled staff will have to handle them in emergencies
- permanently tight to prevent water passage safely
- scenic construction not to impair the landscape during "normal" times
- variable products to suit all space and geographic conditions
- long-life and completely maintenance-free products
- vandalism-proof products to prevent wilful destruction ("flood tourism")
The example of the Stadtwerke Ingolstadt underlines that foresighted planning and investment can prevent extensive damage.
HUBER offers an optimal system of technical flood prevention products, also mobile, which have proven their efficiency many times! The ideal relation between price and value is thereby always and for all applications to the fore.
by Stefan Wittl