Soldiers help with floods in south Yorkshire 131119 CREDIT MOD
UK

Why Are Military Skills Important During Floods?

A former Royal Marine and disaster relief expert has been speaking about the importance of the military during flood relief efforts.

Soldiers help with floods in south Yorkshire 131119 CREDIT MOD

Military personnel have skills that "fit perfectly" when helping with flood relief efforts, according to a former Royal Marine.

More than 140 British Army soldiers were deployed to Yorkshire over the weekend after heavy rainfall and flooding caused by Storm Dennis.

Richard Sharp, CEO of veteran-led disaster response group Team Rubicon UK, said: "Everyone that's served gets given a similar level of skills that fit perfectly into this disaster scenario.

"That's the ability to create order... very quickly, to create a plan and then to have absolute focus on that mission and deliver through the trials and tribulations that mother nature throws at them."

Seventy-five soldiers from 4th Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland, were deployed to Ilkley and Calderdale to help build and repair barriers and flood defences over the weekend.

An additional 70 reservists from 4th Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment, were also called in to provide support where necessary.

Soldiers from 4 SCOTS helped with the flood relief effort in Yorkshire over the weekend (Picture: PA).

Last year, the military also played a key role in flood relief efforts.

In August, a Chinook helicopter from RAF Odiham shored up the Whaley Bridge Dam in Derbyshire.

Meanwhile, in November, 200 soldiers from the UK Standby Battalion were sent to South Yorkshire to help bolster flood defences.

BFBS Defence Analyst Christopher Lee warned climate change is "probably the biggest, unworked for, security problem" for the UK and the globe.

Mr Sharp, meanwhile, described it as the world's "next biggest threat".

"The people that we recruit into Team Rubicon once served their country in Iraq, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland," he said.

"They're now looking to serve again, facing the next biggest threat which is absolutely this climate crisis."

WATCH: Richard Sharp from Team Rubicon UK speaks to Forces News.

Team Rubicon UK has worked in disaster relief scenarios across the world, including Mozambique after Cyclone Idai last year and Indonesia following a tsunami in December 2018.

"Extreme weather events are happening more and more frequently," Mr Sharp said.

"Records are being broken, not even every year now, it's almost monthly... there's another extreme weather event that's causing absolute havoc and even taking life.

"We just know that's going to continue to rise."

Cover image: British troops help with floods in South Yorkshire last year (Picture: MOD).

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