So our visit was well timed as the inevitable has now happened with a third lockdown.
Sadly this means few photos from the breach site as things progress and people stay at home. Yesterday Chris Conroy posted the levels in the docks for me on facebook.
‘Dock level today is 5m 98cm as of 14:36 4/1/21 ….Normal levels are….lower level 6m 20cm …Upper level 6m 55cm’
So a 14 inch difference between low and high levels. If we assume that 5.98m is what it was yesterday, hopefully if he keeps giving me readings from the dock gauge we’ll be able to see if there is a problem of dropping water.
He also reported that the pumps by the caisson gate have been altered slightly but are still operational to keep the level in the docks up. Limited shipping is allowed into the port at high tide so as to minimise the loss of water. Normally there is too much water coming down the Aire and Calder and the excess is monitored and discharged as necessary.
Yesterday C&RT issued a Navigation Closure Notice for the New Junction Canal as follows. It does however refer to locks on the Aire and Calder Navigation.
To reduce water levels at breach site below Pollington Lock water levels from Ferrybridge Lock to Pollington Lock have been slightly reduced and the locks closed for public use.
This is a short term measure being reviewed on a daily basis. The locks and sections above Pollington Lock will be reopened as soon as this is possible.
The section from Pollington Lock to Goole Caisson and Sykehouse Lock will remain closed.
Towpath closed from Pollington Lock to Went End Aqueduct due to bank slippage
Today C&RT have issued an update, although you have to go and look for it on their website! Earlier email updates seem to have stopped.
We are continuing to carry out inspections of the breach site twice per day to ensure safety of the area. These inspections have confirmed that the repair is structurally sound and there is no further flood risk. We have lowered water levels in the canal to reduce the rate of water loss from the breach and the escaped water is being pumped away into the River Don. The water levels in the canal are being managed through the pumps near Goole dock.
Our project team met on Monday 4 January to begin work to repair the breach. The repair work will first require the removal of the water from a section of the canal around the breach point. This will involve the construction of a temporary dam at two locations by piling across the navigation to create a ‘cofferdam’. The design of these temporary works has commenced.
Once the cofferdam is in place, which we expect to be in the next few weeks, the water in the canal can be pumped around it in order to ensure a constant water supply to feed Goole docks. Until the cofferdam is in place it is difficult to be precise how long a permanent repair will take as this very much depends on what damage we find once the water is removed.
The twice daily inspection of the damaged area of canal bank will continue until this cofferdam is in place to ensure public safety. Although we understand that local people may like to visit the site to see the work we’ve done, we advise people to stay well away from the area where the breach has occurred.
From here in Scarborough all we can do is wait, see what we can see on the internet and rely on kindly souls in Goole to keep an eye on Oleanna’s ropes along with many other boats. I suspect the permanent fix will take some time, thankfully we’re not in any big hurry to move. When we do move we may have to cruise new water to escape Goole and go out onto the Tidal Ouse, turning left towards Selby or right to Trent Falls!
0 locks, 0 miles, 5.98m, 3rd lockdown, 1 builder being put on hold, 2 boaters trying to watch from afar, 4 fingers and 2 paws crossed, 1 cat slightly miffed that her itallics are being used by other people!