The Ministry of Defence sent around 40 Royal Marines to the Somerset Levels to help with flood protection. The Government also provided an extra £30 million for repairs. A small unit of Mounted Police patrolled parts of the Somerset Levels after reports of items, including heating oil and quad bikes being stolen from the homes of flood victims on 3 February.
An earth bank at Huntworth was hastily built, connecting the canal bank to the railway embankment and the embankment to the river wall. This was to prevent any flooding from reaching the outskirts of Bridgwater. Some of the Dutch pumps were located behind it at Newhouse Farm to pump any water away.
8 high-output Dutch pumps removing floodwater at Dunball
In mid-February 2014 the Environment Agency began installing giant pumps imported from the Netherlands to alleviate the continuing flooding. A Dutch team of engineers had arrived in at a sluice at Bridgwater with more than 20 lorries full of kit and pumps to help with the flood relief effort in Somerset on 12 February. By 21 February 8 high-output pumps located at Dunball were starting to lower the level in King’s Sedgemoor Drain allowing floodwater-from the upper Parrett to reach it by way of the Sowy River. The water is pumped into the tidal river Parrett for several hours on either side of a high tide. At low tide the water drains through the sluice gates at Dunball by gravity. The Monks Leaze Clyse, near Langport was gradually opened on Saturday 22 February, allowing the operation to start. The pumps at Dunball drew wtare out of the King’s Sedgemoor Drain into the River Parrett at a rate of 56,000 m3 every hour.
There has been enormous local support for those affected by the floods, co-ordinated by FLAG — the Flooding on the Levels Action Group. As well as having volunteers in the villages, they are organising fund-raising, and the collection of supplies to help those who have suffered. They make extensive use of social media – Facebook and Twitter to communicate news.
The Environment Agency’s south west office had reported that a temporary flood barrier in Bridgwater, Somerset has been vandalised by unknown assailants.