Friday, 5 October 2012

The River Severn is still in flood, although 2 boats did come up from Worcester yesterday, and they told us that in Worcester the river was in amber.

We are not planning on moving until tomorrow, so hopefully today the condition here may change.

Yesterday proved a very eventful day for us. We were hoping to have a lazy day, but all that changed around midday.

We decided to go for a pub lunch, so we left the boat and started to walk the short distance in to the town.

We noticed hundreds of fish all close to the surface near the lock, with a small crowd forming, to see what was happening.

The local tea room manager (Len) Told us that is was due to pollution, and that the fish were trying to get air. He also told us that this was the third time this year it had happened.

He explained that if you fill the lock and open the gates, then open the other lock paddles to create a current, the fish will enter the lock, which you could then drain and open, to let the fish in the basin below.

He told us he had contacted the Environment Agency

So with windlasses at the ready, we did as we were instructed, and sure enough, the lock was soon full of fish.

After letting them through to the basin, an onlooker confirmed that they had recovered very quickly. So we went through the process again. Filling the lock, open the gates, create a flow, shut the gates, drain the lock, open the gates.

We repeated this 6 times, before the Environment Agency arrived. However there were still hundreds of fish gasping for air.

The EA tested the water, and it contained 0.05% oxygen (fish need 40%)

After British Waterways and the EA finally agreed a solution (3 hours later, and now many dead fish) Aeroators were brought in
We started our engine and put it in gear also creating air into the system.

The EA worked throughout the night, and this morning, the situation has stabilised. Now they have to find the cause.

We are also featured in the Canal & River Trust web site. We were photographed going through a bridge on Wednesday near Kidderminster, and it is now in a feature. Follow the link below to see.

This afternoon our friends Richard and Sally will be coming to Stourport to pick up there boat which has been moored throughout the flood. And, hopefully the four of us will start our journey back to Gloucester tomorrow morning.

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