Prepare for a flood
Flooding can happen quickly and unexpectedly. There are things you can do limit its impact on your property:
- If you live in a flood risk area, do what you can now to prepare for a flood. Don’t wait until it happens as you may not have time. The Environment Agency have created a personal flood plan which you can download, print and fill in.
- The personal flood plan includes a list of things you should do (like moving sentimental items to safety), and provides space for you to note down important contact details such as your utility companies and insurance.
- You may also want to think about developing a community resilience plan
- Get sandbags or flood barriers in advance if you think your property may be at risk from flooding. The Environment Agency publishes a guide on how best to use them.
- We do not provide sandbags for individual domestic use. We may provide sandbags for strategic deployment during flooding – for the protection of essential services such as electricity or water supplies. When used correctly sandbags can provide some protection from flood waters. If you wish to keep a stock of sandbags, your local builders merchants should be able to help you. Your parish council may also have a supply of sandbags. Note that sandbags are only effective for water up to about 20cm / 8" deep.
- Check the long term flood risk assessment in your area
- Check the latest weather forecast
- If you live by a river or stream, keep a watch on current and expected water levels. You can see the actual water levels at different locations in the county
- Monitor flood warnings and alerts for your area. Use the government's flood information service
- Sign up for Flood Warnings from gov.uk. This is a free service from the Environment Agency that automatically sends a flood warning to your landline, mobile, email or fax
- You can call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 or Typetalk 0845 602 6340 for the latest information.
You can get more advice from the National Flood Forum and the Environment Agency on how to protect yourself and your property if a flood happens. There is also this useful step-by-step guide written by researchers at the University of Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University.