A temporary immersion zone now protects the village of Harmignies from flooding

A temporary immersion zone now protects the village of Harmignies from flooding
A temporary immersion zone now protects the village of Harmignies from flooding

The objective of the ZIT is, during major rainy events, to retain water, via temporary storage in an “immersion zone” protected by a dike. Water storage is automatically regulated using a valve which raises in the event of an increase in the flow of the watercourse. The storage capacity of the Harmignies ZIT is more than 130,000 m³.

“The valve is under water in normal times,” explained Sébastien Gailliez, head of the Directorate of Non-navigable Watercourses of the Public Service of Wallonia. “When the flow increases too much, the valve rises little by little so as to block the river while allowing a constant flow to pass, the excess water then being stored in the ZIT. The guarantee that there will never be any more flooding is not total: in the event of an extreme rainy event, the ZIT, once filled, could no longer play its regulatory role. The Harmignies area is protected for a return period of 25 years. which means that a flood has, each year, a one in 25 chance of occurring.”

The construction of the Harmignies ZIT, which began at the end of 2022, required an investment of some 2.2 million euros.

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