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Balmforth connects zombies with civils

ICE President David Balmforth, survived a “zombie apocalypse” when he visited Manor College in Hartlepool last week.

Balmforth took part in an activity which used a “Walking Dead” style scenario to help the year nine pupils understand the importance of infrastructure and civil engineering.

They were given a scenario where a waterborne virus is turning humans into flesh eating zombies. The students then had to decide the safest place to stay overnight, with access to a water supply, and build a cable stay bridge to enable them to get to safety.

They also had to develop a water filtration system to filter out the virus and make it safe to drink.

The school visit was part of the President’s two-day trip to the North East, during which he also visited Teesport - a deep-water facility with a natural marine opening, providing lock-free access to the North Sea.

He also attended the North East Annual Dinner during which he presented the ICE’s prestigious 2015 Robert Stephenson Awards.

“Seeing the work of the ICE’s volunteers with the pupils of Manor College was inspiring.” he said.

“Educating young people about the rewarding careers available in civil engineering is one of the key strands of the Institution’s work and this zombie challenge really makes it fun and interesting, capturing the imagination of everyone involved.”

Amec Foster Wheeler consultant civil engineer Amy Wright, who was lead volunteer for the activity added: “It was a fantastic event, which everyone enjoyed, and I hope the students benefited from the experience which highlighted the importance of civil engineering in the immediate aftermath of disasters.

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