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Frequently Asked Questions

Please feel free to read the following Pantteg landslip questions and answers.

We have listed the top 10 and the remaining questions are available to download below:

Top 10 Pantteg questions and answers

The landslips are largely related to local geology but there is also a link to high rainfall.

There is also evidence that historical coal mining and quarrying activity may have played a role.

There is weak material in the area as a consequence of historical slips. The steepness of the topography is also a factor.

At present a terrace of ten properties occupied by a maximum of 20 residents has been the subject of prohibition notices. Only two of the properties continue to be occupied contrary to the requirements of the prohibition notices.

Any further action taken by the council will based on expert advice and empirical evidence.

The council does not believe homes outside the designated hazard area to be at risk. However our assessment is extending beyond the current hazard zone to ensure that we are maximising our knowledge of the risk.

The Hazard Risk Map was developed to establish the extent of the risk to residential properties

The map has been revised and updated to ensure its accuracy over the years. We will continue to update it in light of the outcome of further investigations.

Direct communication, in writing, on the phone and face to face has been taking place with residents of the ten properties affected by the emergency prohibition notices.

Every owner and occupier of properties within the existing hazard Risk Zone has been written to advising them of the public meeting on the 7th September where the council will be able to advise residents of the latest information.

A dedicated helpline (01639) 686288 and email address have been set up to take calls and queries from residents. The helpline is answered during office hours (8.30am – 5.00pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am – 4.30 pm Friday).

An answer machine will pick up any calls received outside of those hours. Messages will be responded to within 24 hours during the working week.

A Pantteg page has been set up on the council’s website which is regularly updated.

Locally elected Councillors are ensuring a further link between the residents and the various departments within the council who are involved in this process.

The council has been inspecting the area for a number of years. Investigations and assessments have been carried out regularly since 2012.

However the number of landslip events has increased recently, with four separate events in the last twelve months.

Furthermore, two independent expert assessments and reports have concluded that the overall landslip system cannot be stabilised.

These two recent events have led the council to change its position as we cannot confirm that residents in the area are safe to stay in their homes.

The council has been inspecting the area for a number of years and investigations have been carried out in the area.

Over this period several consultants have been employed to advise the council and various reports and independent assessments produced. Following the landslide in 2012 a report known as the Jacobs report was written and published (December 2013) this is on our website. A further report was undertaken by Earth Science Partnership in September 2016. ESP continue to monitor the landslide area and are in the process of updating the Hazard Zone map for the council as a consequence.

The Hazard Risk Map was developed to establish the extent of the risk to residential properties – this has been revised and updated to ensure its accuracy over the years.

A monitoring regime in relation to ground water levels and surface movement is ongoing. This is through the use of monitoring equipment which has been placed into existing and new boreholes which have been created throughout the Pantteg area. This equipment will identify changes in ground water levels in addition to movements of the ground. Lidar surveys are also being undertaken which will map out the area at the moment. These areas will be re-surveyed early next year to establish whether and where there has been ground movement.

The Council allocated £440K to monitor the landslip, enhance the drainage and rebuild retaining walls over the next three years.

The Council does not believe homes outside the designated hazard area to be at risk. Nevertheless the assessment work which is currently taking place is looking at a slightly larger area than that previously mapped within the Hazard Zone Map. This is intended to capture as much data as possible to clearly identify whether the size of the hazard risk area has changed over time.

The Hazard Risk Map was developed to establish the extent of the risk to residential properties in the area.

The map has been revised and updated to ensure its accuracy over the years and we are continuing to update it in light of recent events.

The Council has a duty to protect residents from harm.

The monitoring and assessment work currently being undertaken has categorised property, infrastructure and land into high, medium and low hazard areas.

Further quantitative analysis will inform whether or not residents will be able to safely remain in their homes.

We have cleared and re-profiled the area which was affected by the slip in 2012, in addition to clearing trees, and maintaining highway drains. We have concentrated our efforts on monitoring the highway, associated drainage systems and retaining walls. We have also recently installed monitoring equipment within existing and new boreholes on council land and by agreement with owners on some privately owned land to measure ground water and ground movements and are currently undertaking Lidar surveys- new work has been carried out in the wake of each report that we have commissioned.

In 1987 and 1989 reports into the Pantteg and Godre’r Graig landslips commissioned by the former Lliw Valley Borough Council produced a Hazard and Risk Assessment Plan.

In 1997, following local government reorganisation, Neath Port Talbot Council carried out its own review into the landslip areas resulting in a revised Hazard Risk Zone Map.

Following a landslip in December 2012, Neath Port Talbot Council commissioned Jacobs Engineering UK to review and update the existing risk assessment of the landslip areas. This report was published in January 2014 including an updated Hazard Risk Map.

The report made a number of recommendations for risk reduction measures, the majority of which were implemented. The report also recommended a further quantitative assessment including the implementation of systems to record and assesses rates of ground movement.

In 2015 Neath Port Talbot Council commissioned Earth Science Partnership to undertake a geotechnical assessment and advise the council on quantitative assessment methods and a suitable monitoring and management regime for the landslip area.

The report (2016)  recommended the development of a formal management strategy based on long term monitoring and assessment of quantitative data such as ground water levels and topographical data from LiDAR surveys (a technique using laser light to monitor ground and surface movements.

The recommendations to develop a formal management strategy of the landslip area are being implemented; for example boreholes are in place within which data-loggers are collecting critical information and the first LiDAR survey has been completed.

The council is not prepared to wait for an accident to occur.

Based on site reconnaissance, knowledge of the wider landslip, geomorphology of the slopes to the east of Cyfyng Road and recent ground water monitoring following storm Doris (February 2017) it is considered likely that additional ground movement will occur in the short and medium term, possibly destabilising the structures and adjacent areas.

Because of the proximity of the failures to people and property, it is considered that there is an immediate risk to those receptors (high probability, significant impact).This is why we are taking proactive action rather than reactive action.