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Storm surge barriers are often our first line of defence against the rising tides. These barriers exist and are being developed all around the world to reduce the risk of severe flooding to people, property and places.

I-STORM is the international knowledge sharing network for all those working in the storm surge barrier industry. Within our network specialists around the world are getting together to face common challenges. We enable continuous improvements in storm surge barrier design, operation, maintenance and management.

The challenge

Storm surge barriers are unique structures that require personnel with specialist knowledge to operate and maintain them, so the barrier can be relied upon to perform whenever it is called into action. However, as storm surge barriers age the maintenance challenges grow. Changing climates and sea level rise also cause a growing pressure on barriers to operate more frequently. To deal with all these challenges, barriers need to continuously adapt and improve ways of working.

Learn more

About us

I-STORM is an international knowledge sharing network for all those who have a part to play in achieving reliable storm surge barriers. We facilitate knowledge exchange and collaboration between our members, to help them deal with common challenges at an international level, and enable continuous improvement in storm surge barrier design, operation and management.

Learn more

21 October, 2021

Thames Barrier 200th Closure

Learn more

View all news >>

"We are convinced that, although each storm surge barrier is unique, we face similar challenges. By developing relationships and learning from each other, we can ensure maximum reliability of our barriers."

Andy Batchelor, Operations Manager Thames Tidal Defences England
&
Marc Walraven, Storm Surge Barrier Senior Advisor in The Netherlands

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Storm surge barriers are often our first line of defence against the rising tides. These barriers exist and are being developed all around the world to reduce the risk of severe flooding to people, property and places.

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I-STORM is the international knowledge sharing network for all those working in the storm surge barrier industry. Within our network specialists around the world are getting together to face common challenges. We enable continuous improvements in storm surge barrier design, operation, maintenance and management.

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Storm surge barriers are unique structures that require personnel with specialist knowledge to operate and maintain them, so the barrier can be relied upon to perform whenever it is called into action. However, as storm surge barriers age the maintenance challenges grow. Changing climates and sea level rise also cause a growing pressure on barriers to operate more frequently. To deal with all these challenges, barriers need to continuously adapt and improve ways of working.

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I-STORM is an international knowledge sharing network for all those who have a part to play in achieving reliable storm surge barriers. We facilitate knowledge exchange and collaboration between our members, to help them deal with common challenges at an international level, and enable continuous improvement in storm surge barrier design, operation and management.

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The Thames Barrier is closing today (Thursday 21 October 2021) as a result of spring tides, tidal surge - resulting from low pressure over Scandinavia creating a strong northerly wind - and recent rainfall. This operation marks 200 flood defence closures of the UK’s largest flood defence asset since 1982.

The same conditions have also resulted in closures of other structures across the I-STORM network. The Hollansche IJssel and Haringvliet Sluices in the Netherlands are both operating, and it’s expected that the Tilbury gate in Essex (UK) will also be rolled across today (21 Oct). Best of luck to all the teams!

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Over the four days, we had up to 150 attendees join us for sessions from 14 presenters from 7 different organisations.

[text] =>

The week covered a wide range of topics under 4 themes: Storm Surge Barriers, Climate Adaptation, Reliability and Sustainability.

If you missed any of the events, or want to revisit any of the sessions, all presentations and a recording of each day is available for members to download on the Annual Meeting event.

We want to thanks all of our presenters, for giving up their time to prepare and present. Special thanks also go to the team at Samui Design & Management who worked behind the scenes to make sure all of the technology worked on the day. Finally, we also want to thank those of you who joined us on the days. We hope you enjoyed the events and found them useful!

 

[membertext] =>

We'd be grateful if you could take 5 minutes to provide us with some feedback, so that we can improve all future I-STORM events. You can do this via the link below. 

https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/AM21_feedback/

The 2022 I-STORM Annual Meeting will take place from 07-10 June 2022 in Rotterdam. We hope to see you there!

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At the Annual Meeting, we launched the I-STORM Characteristics Table and Barrier Map Tool. As a network, we receive a lot of enquiries about the characteristics of our barriers, from within the network but also from the general public. So, we produced our Characteristics Table, which shows the key characteristics of our barriers, such as location, gate type, width of the waterway, etc. We have also turned this into an interactive tool, which enables users to scroll around the world, select barriers and see their characteristics.

The current versions contain only publicly available information, but we want to expand this to include information that is only available to members. Please take a few minutes to visit the Barriers page on the website, download the Characteristics Table (also available below), have a look at the map tool and provide us with your comments and suggestions via the feedback form.

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The ICE People's Choice Award celebrates civil engineering projects that have made a positive impact on local communities. The Boston Barrier (UK) has been shortlisted alongside five other projects for this major international award. Boston Barrier and is herewith recognised as a civil engineering masterpiece.

[text] =>

The winner will be decided by the public, so click here (or the link below) to vote and show your support for the Boston Barrier team!

Voting is open for six weeks and the winner will be announced on 02 November 2021.

To find out more and to cast your vote, visit: ice.org.uk/peopleschoice.

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Following the end of Joe Hassinger's term as Commissioner to the Board, the Flood Protection Authority East have welcomed Rick Duplantier as his successor. This Augus the new Commissioner visited the Dutch barriers.

[text] =>

As an introduction to I-STORM, Rick was given a tour of several Dutch structures, including the Hollandsche IJssel and Eastern Scheldt Barriers, guided by experts from the Rijkswaterstaat teams.

The Flood Protection Authority are an important member of the I-STORM network and we look forward to working with Rick and the team in the future.

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De eerste Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2021 staat weer online! Vol met interessante updates en in een geheel nieuwe look!

[text] =>

Na de volledig vernieuwde huisstijl van I-STORM – en dus ook van I-STORM.NL – mocht deze nieuwsbrief natuurlijk niet achterblijven. Daarom is ook de Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen in een nieuw jasje gestoken.

Onderwerpen die in deze nieuwsbrief aan bod komen zijn onder andere:

Neem dus snel in kijkje en download de nieuwsbrief via onze Downloads-pagina.

Aarzel niet contact op te nemen met een van je collega’s als je meer informatie wilt over de projecten en initiatieven die in de nieuwsbrief aan bod komen. En voor degenen die onderwerpen willen teruglezen uit voorgaande edities, klik dan door naar onze Downloads-pagina. Daar vind je edities van voorgaande jaren.

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I-STORM and the work we do has recently been promoted by Emma Howard Boyd, Chair of the Environment Agency and UK Commissioner to the Global Commission on Adaptation. And not only once but twice!

[text] =>

In October 2020, I-STORM was referenced by the Environment Agency Chair as one of her "favourite examples" of how international collaboration is extremely valuable, in an address to the World Pensions Summit. 

Then in March 2021, in a speech at United States and United Kingdom: united in creating green jobs - an event hosted by the British Embassy in Washington DC - Emma hailed I-STORM as a network that "shows international collaboration is extremely valuable, even when it comes to unique, place-bsaed climate challenges". 

It's fantastic to see I-STORM recieving this kind of recognition and these comments are a fantastic accolade for our network and the work that our members do every single day.

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I-STORM was featured in the March edition of the International Water Power and Dam Construction (IWPDC) magazine, the leading monthly international publication serving the needs of those involved in dam construction and the hydroelectricity industries.

[text] =>

We contributed a piece all about the network, storm surge barrier assets and the importance of knowledge exchange on a global scale. It was a fantastic opportunity for us to showcase the network and the necessity of the work that we do in bringing storm surge barrier professionals together to create a world better protected from tidal flooding.  

Click here to access the full article or download the PDF below.

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De derde en laatste Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2020 staat online!

 

 

[text] =>

In deze nieuwsbrief vind je onder andere:

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

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As the I-STORM network grows and becomes more and more professional, we are happy to announce that we have launched today a brand new I-STORM website, logo and look.

[text] =>

As the I-STORM network grows and becomes more and more professional, we are happy to announce that we have launched today a brand new I-STORM website, logo and look.

Over the last decade I-STORM has continuously evolved as an organisation, strengthening its organisation and connections across the globe, maturing into the international knowledge sharing network for all those working with storm surge barriers it is today. As I-STORM continues to grow, it became clear that our I-STORM network needed an updated look and a new website that would be of key benefit to all of our members. So, over the past 6 months I-STORM’s coordination team have been busy developing an image that suits the network for now and the future.

Over the next few months, we will be developing the website further and adding more content and features, so watch this space!

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Due to the current global travel and meeting restrictions, we were unable to hold our 2020 Annual meeting as planned. However, we are happy to announce that the event will now go ahead in October 2021. 

[text] =>

Due to all travel and meeting restrictions worldwide, we had to decide last March to reschedule our Annual Meeting, planned for June 2020. To keep in contact with our members and facilitate knowledge exchange we organised several virtual meetings. Prospects of meeting face to face are becoming more promising, we have therefore rescheduled our Annual Meeting to October 2021. We’re really looking forward to meeting our members again in person. If all goes well of course.

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I-STORM held two webinars for members in June 2020. The first was an update from Galveston, Texas on the Coastal Texas Study, the second was an open discussion on how members have been managing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in their respective organisations. Here is a short review.

[text] =>

10 June: Coastal Texas Project Update Webinar

The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and Texas General Land Office’s (TGLO) Coastal TX Study Team are designing flood defences in the Galveston region to protect this area from storm surges. As there is a lot of knowledge in the I-STORM network, in March 2019 I-STORM members took part in the Gate Design Workshop, to explore different barrier concepts to be taken forward to the next level of feasibility analysis. This June the team gave an update on the project, which was informative and really well attended.

Attendees were very enthusiastic, so our thanks go to our colleagues at the USACE and TGLO for their fantastic and interesting presentation and their time answering the many questions members had! 

17 June: COVID-19 Working Practices Webinar

The second webinar was an open discussion on how members have been managing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in their respective organisations. The attendees heard from the Environment Agency (UK), Rijkswaterstaat (NL) and South Louisiana Flood Protection Authority East (USA) on how they have continued maintenance and operations during this time. This webinar also highlighted many of the challenges regarding testing and social distancing. Many thanks to all our presenters from the above organisations for their time and contributions to the discussion! Further information about this webinar can be found on the webinar page.

[membertext] =>

Audio recording available

Regarding Coastal Texas Project Update Webinar of 10 June 2020, an audio recording of the session is available to I-STORM members along with the slides for anyone who was unable to join on the day. Please contact enquiries@i-storm.org for further details.

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De tweede Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2020 staat online!

[text] =>

 

In deze nieuwsbrief vind je onder andere:

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

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Across the network many barrier teams only plan their maintenance to take place during the summer season. By strictly separating this maintenance season from the storm season, it is clear when maintenance is allowed and when not. At the same time, this brings several challenges. I-STORM member Rijkswaterstaat did some research in how to deal with this issue.

[text] =>

Many barrier teams recognise two seasons, a storm season and a summer season. Based on historical data the probability of a storm is significantly higher in the storm season. Maintenance is therefore planned during the summer season which often creates a lot of pressure due to time constraints. Additionally, sometimes barriers need to close during stormy weather in spring and summer. As a result a full maintenance season can’t always be used. 

Low-risk and high-risk

In a new research project, I-STORM member Rijkswaterstaat aims to achieve a better understanding of storm prediction models and how far ahead a storm can be predicted. If the prediction period is a significant, more maintenance could be planned in the storm season. During this research Rijkswaterstaat also learned from I-STORM members in the UK who don’t operate strictly separate seasons but have a high risk and low risk season approach. This demonstrates the benefits I-STORM offers its international partners.

[membertext] =>

Protocols

Of course, when barrier teams start to plan maintenance in storm season, good protocols on planning and maintenance are required. Some barrier teams already use the terms of low-risk and high-risk seasons and try to plan the maintenance in storm season, as long as it can’t affect the closure performance.

More information?

If you would like to have more information on this subject, please send us an email at enquiries@i-storm.organd we will put you in contact with Rijkswaterstaat.

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De eerste Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2020 staat online!

[text] =>

In deze nieuwsbrief lees je meer over onder andere:

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

 

 

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We have been continuing to monitor the latest guidance and information available on the global Coronavirus outbreak. Due to the uncertainty of the Corona virus we decided not to reschedule the meeting for this year, but are looking for possibilities in 2021.

[text] =>

Preparations for the I-STORM Annual Meeting in Rotterdam in June 2020 were in full swing, but unfortunately due to the current global Coronavirus pandemic and ongoing travel and meeting restrictions worldwide, we decided meeting face to face would not be possible. As a result, the 2020 I-STORM Annual Meeting has been cancelled.  

As it’s not clear yet when the restrictions will be lifted, we have decided not to rearrange our Annual Meeting for 2020 but are now exploring possibilities for next year.

Webinars instead

In place of the Annual Meeting, I-STORM plans to hold other events to continue knowledge sharing amongst members. We are hoping to run virtual meetings on the topics submitted as session proposals.

[membertext] =>

Inconvenience

We apologise for any inconvenience this decision may cause, but hope you understand that we have taken the decision we believe is best, for the health and safety of our members. Please watch our News page for updates to be released in due course.

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De derde en laatste Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2019 staat online!

[text] =>

 

In deze nieuwsbrief lees je meer over (onder andere):

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

 

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De tweede Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2019 staat online!

[text] =>

In deze nieuwsbrief vind je onder andere:

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

 

[membertext] => [file] => 1/I-STORM_NL/NL News/190701 Nwsbrf SVK 2019-02 voorblad.png [path] => /data/www/is_website/istorm.appstudio.nl/admin/upload/1/I-STORM_NL/NL News/190701 Nwsbrf SVK 2019-02 voorblad.png [url] => /admin/upload/1/I-STORM_NL/NL News/190701 Nwsbrf SVK 2019-02 voorblad.png [date] => 2019-07-01 [pretty_date] => 01 July, 2019 [pubdate] => 2019-07-01 [location] => [local_time] => [is_members_only] => 1 [member] => Array ( [0] => 1 ) ) [18] => stdClass Object ( [id] => 287 [alias_full] => /nieuws/nieuwsbrief-stormvloedkeringen-april-2019-online [alias_news] => nieuws [alias] => nieuwsbrief-stormvloedkeringen-april-2019-online [title] => Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen april 2019 online [subtitle] => [intro] =>

 

De eerste Nieuwsbrief Stormvloedkeringen van 2019 staat online!

[text] =>

 

In deze nieuwsbrief vind je onder andere:

Download ‘m snel via onze downloads-pagina.

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"We are convinced that, although each storm surge barrier is unique, we face similar challenges. By developing relationships and learning from each other, we can ensure maximum reliability of our barriers."

[name] =>

Andy Batchelor, Operations Manager Thames Tidal Defences England
&
Marc Walraven, Storm Surge Barrier Senior Advisor in The Netherlands

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Get involved

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