Worried about flooding in the UK? You’re certainly not alone.
Extreme weather conditions have become a common issue across the country. In fact, thanks to excessive levels of rainfall, February 2020 was deemed the wettest month since records began in 1766 – with devastating effects for many parts of Northern England, the Midlands and Wales.
That’s why, if you live in a ‘flood risk’ area, it’s important to be ready. Don’t just wait for the worst to happen. Do as much as you can now to prepare for a potential flood and reduce its impact.
Here we offer a few tips to get you started.
1. Safeguard your property
To help limit the damage caused by a flood, there a few simple changes that you can make to your property. For example, you could lay waterproof floor tiles (rather than carpet) or move electrical sockets further up the wall. It’s also a good idea to invest in flood protection equipment, such as flood boards, plastic seals for airbricks, sandbags and a flood relief pumping system.
Here at JT Pumps, we currently stock a range of flood relief products, including the EGO 500SE LS Fully Automatic Puddle Sucker, JTResPal 400 Auto Puddle Sucker in 110v and 230v and the JTFlood1. All of these are ‘flood defence approved’ – capable of handling clean or slightly polluted waters – and are an efficient way to pump floodwater away from your premises.
2. Understand the warnings
There are three levels of flood warning:
This means a flood is possible and you should therefore start to prepare. You may wish to pack a bag with essential items and monitor the local water levels.
If an official flood warning is issued, this means it’s time to act. Turn off the gas, water and electricity, start to move items upstairs and ensure you and your family are safe.
The final warning signals that water levels could be dangerous. You should then follow the advice from emergency services and, if in immediate danger, call 999.
To be fully prepared for a flood, you must understand these warnings. Print out a copy or save them to your smartphone and ensure you know exactly what steps to take, and at what stage.
3. Create a personal flood plan
It can also help to create a personal flood plan. Essentially, this is a checklist – which specifies what you can do right now to prepare for a flood (e.g. move sentimental or valuable items to a safe place) and what you would need to do if high levels of rainfall are forecast and a flood alert is raised.
The UK government offers a handy template for you to fill out. This includes a list of things you should do in your home, garden and business and suggests what to include in your flood kit (e.g. home insurance documents, warm waterproof clothing, first aid kit, bottled water, foods).
It also provides a space for you to note down essential contact details, such as the name and telephone number of your electricity and gas provider, water company, local council etc.
4. Invest in insurance
For anyone living in a flood risk zone, adequate home insurance is (arguably) more important than ever. It’s crucial that your buildings and contents policy covers you for potential flooding. Specifically, you need to ensure that it will replace ‘new for old’ and cover the full value of repairs.
If it doesn’t, it’s time to look for a new deal. Simple online comparison sites are an easy way to start your search. But if you’re struggling to find a firm who will insure you for a reasonable price, it’s worth checking out Flood Re. This is a government initiative, which aims to make the flood cover part of household insurance more affordable – and could help you to get the cover you need.
5. Know how to switch things off
If an evacuation is necessary, you will need to turn off the mains water, gas and electricity in your home. The location of stopcocks, shut-off valves and master switches varies between properties. Therefore, to prepare for a flood, make sure you know exactly where these are in advance.
It can also help to mark the taps and switches with a sticker. Household floods can be an extremely stressful time. But this simple trick will remind you what to do and help to keep you calm.
Prepare for floods with a pumping station
For further information on floods and how to prepare for them successfully, remember, you’re welcome to get in touch at any time. Here at JT Pumps, we have excellent knowledge in this area. Not only can we provide further tips on how to prepare and protect your property, we can also recommend – and supply – the ideal flood relief puddle pumps and pumping stations for your requirements.