A number of insurers that we work with have warned us to expect flood claims as the situation in the South West and Wales worsens. With this in mind, we thought we should share some practical advice for those at risk.
- Be prepared to evacuate your property and think about where you can go for safety – will the road / escape route out be passable?
- Know how to turn off your gas, electricity and water mains supplies.
- Prepare a flood kit of essential items such as a broom, spade, mop and bucket; domestic detergent and disinfectant; rubber boots, gloves and protective clothing; waterproof torch and radio; bottled water for drinking.
- Agree where you will go and how to contact friends and family.
- Think about what items you can move to a safe place for later and what are essential items for you to have now.
- Create a list of important numbers including Floodline 0845 988 188.
- You can sign up for Floodline Warnings Direct by calling Floodline on 0845 988 188 or by visiting the Environment Agency website.
Advice during a flood:
- Safety comes first! Think about evacuation before it is too late to move. Make sure you follow any advice or instructions provided by the emergency services.
- If floodwater is about to enter your home, turn off the gas, electricity and water supplies if it is safe to do so. DO NOT touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water.
- Gas and electricity supplies should remain switched off until a qualified professional has checked the system thoroughly. Wiring, appliances and pipe-work should also be inspected for safety and efficiency.
- Keep listening to local radio for updates or call Floodline on 0845 988 1188.
- Move irreplaceable personal or sentimental items, such as photographs – as well as portable items – to an upper storey or higher location in your property to prevent loss or damage.
- Also check your garage to see if any items can be moved.
- If possible, raise ground floor furniture on blocks or bricks to minimise the risk of damage.