1 in 6 properties in England are at risk of flooding. That's around 5.2 million people. Take these three simple steps to protect you, your family, and your home from the devastating effects of flooding:
- Use the Gov.uk Flood Information Service to find out if you're at risk from flooding
- Check if free flood warnings are available for your area and register online
- Do something to be prepared. Start with a quick, personal flood plan. If you own a business, write a business flood plan.
Gov.uk produce a five day flood risk forecast. They also provide a flood warning service, a free service that provides flood warnings by telephone, mobile, email, SMS text message and fax. You can enter your postcode and check to find out if your home or business is at risk of flooding.
Use insulation tape to tape empty bin bags around the bottom and sides of the door, leaving a good overlap. Put sandbags on top of the bin bags and tread them into place. You can seal air vents in the same way. Don't forget to seal up other gaps like letterboxes, cat flaps and tumble drier vents.
If water does get into your property, try to bail it out. To keep safe, turn off your electricity and gas supply. When the level of floodwater is going down, contact your insurance company for advice on reducing the amount of damage to your property and possessions.
During periods of flooding, we will help wherever possible, according to the resources we have available. We have an Emergency Plan, which covers what to do if we need to evacuate houses and set up temporary accommodation.
Health and Safety
Floodwater often leaves mud behind, that may contain bacteria and other microorganisms. Don't worry, as the risk to health is believed to be small. However, if you have a stomach upset after contact with floodwater or you are concerned in any way, please consult your GP.
- Battery-powered radios
- Torch (including batteries)
- Rubber boots
- Rubber gloves
- A camera and film (if not digital) or video to record the flooding as it occurs (for insurance purposes)
- Bin bags (plastic sheets)
- Insulation tape
- Concentrate on the lowest area first and block any ground floor toilet bowls with a sandbag to reduce internal flooding with sewage
- Move valuables to a higher level e.g. upstairs, shelves or windowsills. Don't forget items that cannot be replaced, like photograph albums things of sentimental value
- Make sure electrical equipment is lifted off the floor, e.g. DVD players and stereos
- Do not forget pets or to make arrangements for children at school
- If you have time, move your car out of the area, but avoid driving through any floodwater as the wave created by your vehicle could flood more properties
- When you have done all that you can, see if your neighbours need any help.
- Remember, photographs and video evidence taken during the flooding can help with investigations and insurance claims.
Always avoid travel if there is deep water on the roads.
Water Supply (to find out your area, check your water bill)
- United Utilities: 08457 462 200
- Yorkshire Water: 08451 242 424
- United Utilities: 08456 020 406
- Yorkshire Water: 08451 242 429
Most public sewers in Pendle are the responsibility of United Utilities. However, Yorkshire Water is responsible for Earby, Salterforth and Foulridge (apart from a section of Alma Avenue, which has United Utilities' sewers).
Lancashire County Council have some excellent advice on their Flooding pages:
Other sources of help and advice:
- Gov.UK - Flooding and extreme weather
- National Flood Forum website
- Blue Pages - products and services to help reduce the risk of flooding to your property
The Government have worked together with the insurance industry to come up with the Flood Re insurance scheme. This helps you to find affordable insurance if your property is at risk of flooding.