Flooding FAQ

  • How can I find out if my property is at risk of flooding from a river?

    The Environment Agency publish a map on their website that provides a good indication of the areas in England and Wales that are at risk of flooding from rivers or the sea.  However, the map does not show the level of risk to an individual property. 

    The Environment Agency Flood Map shows risk of flooding from rivers and the sea.  It will tell you if your property is at risk.

  • How can I find out if my property is at risk of surface water flooding?

    The Environment Agency publish a map on their website that provides a good indication of the areas in England and Wales that are at risk of flooding from surface water.  However, the map does not show the level of risk to an individual property.

    The Environment Agency Risk of Flooding from Surface Water map will tell you if your property is at risk. 

  • What is meant by a 1 in 100 year flood risk?

    The phrase can be confusing. Many mistakenly believe that it is a flood that occurs every 100 years.  However, the phrase really means a flood that has a one percent chance of occurring in any year. The 2007 floods were in this category.

  • How can I be alerted to the possibility of flooding occurring?

    The Environment Agency operates a flood warning system, which is totally free to sign up to.  For further information or to sign up, call: 0845 988 1188 (Calls to this number attract a pence per minute). Please contact the company concerned to find out their charges or visit their Flood Warnings Direct web page. 

    If flooding is forecast, warnings are issued using a set of four easily recognisable codes.

    Each of the four codes indicates the level of danger associated with the warning.

  • I live in a Flood Zone, how should I prepare?

    Check your insurance cover - Check your buildings and contents insurance policy. Confirm you are covered for flooding. Find out if the policy replaces new for old, and if it has a limit on repairs. Don't underestimate the value of your contents.

    Know how to turn off your gas, electricity and water mains supplies - If you are in doubt, ask your supplier how to do this. Mark taps or switches with stickers to help you remember.

    Prepare a flood kit of essential items - Copies of your home insurance documents, a torch with spare batteries, a wind-up or battery radio, warm and waterproof clothing and blankets, a first aid kit and prescription medication, bottled water and non-perishable foods. Baby food and baby care items and a list of important contact numbers. Always keep your flood kit handy.

    Know who to contact and how - Agree where you will go in the event of flooding and how to contact each other. Check with your council if pets are allowed at evacuation centres. Keep a list with all your important contacts to hand.

    Think about what you can move now - Don't wait for a flood. Move items of personal value such as photo albums, family videos and treasured mementos to a safe place.

    Think about what you would want to move to safety during a flood - Outdoor pets, cars, furniture, electrical equipment, garden pot plants and furniture ... what else?

    The Environment Agency website contains useful information and advice on their Prepare your property for flooding web page or alternatively you can contact them on their Floodline number:  0845 988 1188.

  • Help! My home is in imminent danger of flooding, what should I do?

    Gather essential items together either upstairs or in a high place. Fill jugs and saucepans with clean water. Move your family and pets upstairs, or to a high place with a means of escape. Turn off gas, electricity and water supplies when floodwater is about to enter your home if safe to do so. DO NOT touch sources of electricity when standing in floodwater. Keep listening to local radio for updates or call Floodline 0845 988 1188. Floodwater can rise quickly, stay calm and reassure those around you. Call 999 if you are in danger.

  • Where can I get sandbags?

    If you are in imminent danger of flooding, you can fill any plastic bags (bin liners or store bags etc) with any bulky material from the garden i.e. soil, sand or dig up a section of turf.  This may cause damage to your garden but may give sufficient protection to your property until the flood waters subside.  Place and mould the bags to form a barrier across door steps, ventilation bricks and across any other point that water may ingress the property. 

    If you are not in imminent danger of flooding, you can purchase traditional sandbags from local builder merchants throughout the district.

  • What flood protection products should I use?

    There are many different products on the market that are designed to protect your home from flooding, such as airbricks fitted with water resistant valves or water resistant door and window barriers.  There are many benefits to having such products - not only will they help to minimise water damage occurring in your home, but they may also help to reduce insurance costs.

    The National Flood Forum is a registered charity that offers support and advice to communities and individuals that have been flooded or are at risk of flooding.  Follow this link to the National Flood Forum.

    The National Flood Forum has a publication called the Blue Pages which lists a wide range of products and services available to help protect your home or business from flooding.

    Follow this link to the Blue Pages.