Tyne & Wear

Newburn flood-damaged flats: Culvert investigation begins

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Media captionThe flats have now been demolished

Workers will go inside a collapsed culvert to investigate how a block of flats was left close to collapse after flooding in Newcastle.

Floodwater gouged out the ground beneath Spencer Court, Newburn, on 25 September, exposing the piles holding it up and damaging foundations.

The flats have now been demolished, allowing workers and machinery safe access to the open section of culvert.

It is hoped investigations will find what caused the problem.

Work began last week to allow access into the open section of culvert between Spencer Court and Mill Vale and has now been completed.

Weather dependant

Ventilation and air monitoring equipment has been installed inside the culvert for workers who will be removing the debris.

Dunelm Homes said, subject to approval, teams would work 24 hours a day, seven days a week, depending on the weather.

Neither Northumberland Estates, which owns the land where the culvert stands, or Dunelm Homes has admitted liability.

About 40 million litres (8.7m gallons) of water was pumped out of the estate after the downpours.

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