Protecting Your Property or Business from Flooding

Flooding can strike unexpectedly, wreaking havoc on properties and businesses. It is estimated that in the UK over 5 million properties are at risk of flooding, making it a critical concern for residents and business owners. To safeguard your property and business, it’s essential to understand the risks, be prepared, and know what to do in the event of a flood. At Sutcliffe & Co Insurance Broker we are highly experienced in flooding insurance and we can guide you through a flood risk assessment, preparation, and recovery, ensuring you can weather the storm with resilience.

Understanding your flood risks.

There are different types of flooding which can result in floods taking on various forms, depending on the triggering events. These can range from flash floods caused by intense rainfall to coastal flooding due to storm surges. It is important to recognise the different types of flooding and their characteristics, as each demands a specific response.

By monitoring weather conditions and observing warnings you can keep one step ahead so that you can be better prepared in the event of a flood. The UK’s Met Office provides valuable weather advisories and flood warnings through its National Severe Weather Warning Service. These warnings are color-coded (Green, Yellow, Amber, Red) based on the likelihood and impact of severe weather events. Staying informed through local weather forecasts and the Met Office’s alerts is a proactive way to prepare for potential flooding.

Preparing for a flood is your best defence.

Understanding your risk is the first step in putting a plan together. You can access flood maps from relevant agencies like the Environment Agency, SEPA, or Northern Ireland’s Rivers Agency to assess your flood risk. You can also signup for flood warning and register for advance flood warnings and create a personal flood plan, which includes a flood kit with essential items.

Property preparation is key to damage limitation. Consider elevating critical systems, protecting valuables, and you could also install flood prevention measures like check valves. Read our Flood Toolkit for a list of ways to prepare for flooding.

Spend time developing an emergency plan and establish communication with family members or employees and have a designated safe meeting point. Of course, flood insurance is a must-have to ensure your property and business are adequately covered for flood damage.

Keeping safe during a flood.

Make sure you stay informed of changes during the flood by listening to local radio or television for updates and be prepared to move to higher ground if flash flooding is a concern.

Leave plenty of time to turn off utilities so that you can safely disconnect gas, electricity, and water supplies if necessary. Always avoid walking or driving through flood water as you can’t see what is under the water or how deep it is. If you are advised to evacuate follow emergency service instructions and be ready to evacuate if required.

What to do after the flood.

After the flood wait for authorities to confirm it’s safe to re-enter your property, as floodwaters may have left hidden dangers. Contact your insurer, document the damage, and take photographs to support your claim.

Then the cleanup begins! Disinfect and clean your property following health and safety guidelines. A structural assessment may also be necessary to ensure the safety of your building before re-entering. Next check your insurance documents and check for flood coverage and business interruption policies.

Flooding is a significant risk in the UK, particularly with the impact of climate change but with proper preparation and proactive measures, you can protect your property and business. Understanding flood risks, staying informed, and having a well-thought-out plan are essential steps to weathering the storm and recovering effectively.

Download our FREE flooding toolkit today by clicking HERE. Alternatively call our experience team on 01905 21681.