The Block-it automatic flood defense


The problem

Climate change and rising sea levels due to global warming are causing more frequent and severe flooding in coastal and river basins. This concerns both rural and urban areas that have a high value in socio-cultural, economic and ecological terms. Time seems to have passed that protection using sandbags is adequate against frequently occurring, extreme and rapidly developing high water levels. 

The protection of these areas, which relates both to the public space, but also to buildings and risk-bearing underground facilities such as the metro, tunnel, cellars and utilities, requires new and different water controlling techniques that not only have to keep water out during calamities, but also be able to withstand  the impact of objects floating in the water being thrown against the barrier such as boats and other objects . From the land side it has to withstand  vehicles that run by accident into the barrier.

The flood defence needs to be robust and safe, to create an environment for people to live, work and recreate in these areas, with as little damage as possible to the current urban and landscape values, 

Responding to the changing natural conditions, Block It has developed a permanently installed, instantly mobilised, flexible concrete flood defense system for the high water protection.

This system can be used in areas where there is little to no space and can prevent extreme flooding in a sustainable manner and and can take impact of at least 500kN without losing its protection function. This flexible barrier can be fitted operating manually (entry-level model) , operated by remote control or operated via fully automatic computer controlled operating system, which is guided by the current water levels on site.

Can be built on any surface 

Because the barrier can easily be built on both steel and poles, it can be built on any conceivable surface.

Can be combined with quay wall repair 

With its foundation, the barrier forms a firmly anchored block in the ground behind any existing quay walls. The block can well serve as an anchor partition for old quay wallsthat have to be renovated.

The properties

The Block It mobilisable flood defense Is unique due to its unique collection of characteristics that distinguishes it from other mobilisable flood defenses:

  • Quickly mobilised
  • Invisible when not operational
  • No permanemt visual structures above ground
  • Automatic system check before mobilisation
  • Unaided automatic mobilisation
  • Can absorb point loads of 500kN without loss of flood defense function (EXTERNALLY TESTED)
  • Remote control optional
  • Can be built on any surface 
  • Can be combined with quay wall repair
  • Reliability through the use of proven techniques and materials
  • Mobilised construction not sensitive to weather conditions
  • Very low failure rate (EXTERNALLY TESTED)
  • Sustainable construction

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