Police force who mounted emergency flood response refers itself to watchdog after pensioner, 83, drowns at her home
- Maureen Gilbert was found dead at her home in Chesterfield on Saturday
- Derbyshire Constabulary has referred itself to the IOPC following her death
A police force has referred itself to a watchdog after a pensioner drowned during flooding caused by Storm Babet.
Maureen Gilbert, 83, was found dead by her son Paul Gilbert on the bottom floor of her flooded home on Tapton Terrace in Chesterfield, Derbyshire on Saturday.
Derbyshire Constabulary said it has referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct, while enquiries into the circumstances of her death are ongoing.
The force said in a statement: ‘The referral is mandatory due to officers being involved with the evacuation of homes in the area on Friday evening.
‘This was part of a multi-agency response in which the force was supporting colleagues from Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service who were evacuating properties.’
A police force has referred itself to a watchdog after pensioner Maureen Gilbert, 83, drowned during flooding caused by Storm Babet. Maureen is pictured here with husband Jack Gilbert on their wedding day in 1975
Maureen was found dead by her son Paul Gilbert on the bottom floor of her flooded home on Tapton Terrace in Chesterfield, Derbyshire on Saturday
Maureen is believed to have been the ninth person who died in weather-related incidents in recent days after her street in flooded during Storm Babet.
Her death came as fresh ‘risk to life’ flood warnings were issued in bordering Nottinghamshire as residents close to a river at record levels were told to prepare to leave their homes.
Pensioner Mrs Gilbert had lived in the street all of her life, her heartbroken family said on Sunday, after detailing how her son and grandson found her body at home on the morning of October 21 despite efforts to waterproof the house.
Maureen, who neighbours said had barely left the house in years, lived downstairs in the two-story home as she had mobility problems and was unable to go upstairs; when water flooded into her home at ‘chest height’ she was unable to escape.
Derbyshire Police say they were called out to a property in Tapton Terrace at 10.35am on Saturday.
Her daughter-in-law has told how chest-high flood defences in the doorways were overcome when the River Rother burst outside, with water ‘pouring over at rapid speed’.
In a crowdfunding appeal, Kaye Gilbert said the property in Tapton Terrace, Chesterfield, had previously flooded in 2007. It was not insured because the family had been quoted a £10,000 excess to clean and restore it following flood damage.
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