Some advice if you are affected by flooding and during the clean-up phase
Here is some advice on what you should do during the floods and during the clean-up operation afterwards.
During flooding we advise you:
- remain calm, and if possible check in on vulnerable neighbours
- move people, pets and valuables upstairs or to a higher place with means of escape
- the emergency services will issue you with advice if you need to evacuate your property – if you are evacuated from your home the local council will set up rest centres and provide you with food and bedding, if you have no means of transport the Local council can support these arrangements
- if your home begins to flood, turn off your electricity supply and do not touch any sources of electricity when you are standing in flood water
- do not try to drive through flood water
Clearing up after a flood
- petrol or diesel-fuelled generators used to power water pumps or other flood recovery devices are designed for outdoor use only
- these pumps give off a variety of toxic gases including carbon monoxide fumes which can overcome people in the building or nearby areas if used in an enclosed space.
- talk to your insurance company and follow their advice
- wear rubber boots, waterproof gloves and an apron to clean up. If cleaning causes a lot of water to splash from scrubbing, hosing or pressure-washing, wear a standard face mask, such as those sold by DIY stores. Goggles offer added protection and they can be reused after thorough washing
- remember to wash your hands thoroughly after each clean-up session. Keep open cuts or sores clean and use waterproof plasters to prevent them being exposed to flood water which could be contaminated
- do not turn on gas or electrics if they may have got wet. Only turn them on when they have been checked by a qualified technician
- heating, dehumidifiers and good ventilation can also help dry out your home
- if you have gas or oil central heating and it has been checked by an engineer, turn it on. Keep the thermostat between 20°C to 22°C for steady drying
- if you have air bricks to any under floor spaces, ensure that these are unblocked to give cross ventilation to these areas. As floorboards and walls continue to dry out, any loose material and dust resulting from this should be vacuumed up on a regular basis
- remove dirty water and silt from the property including the space under the ground floor if you have wooden floors. This space may need pumping out
- mould should clear as your home dries out but if it persists, contact a specialist cleaner
- place rubbish in hard bins or in rubbish bags
- dispose of dead rodents and pests in a plastic bag, wearing rubber gloves
Anyone with concerns for their health should contact their GP for advice, or call
Sources of information and Advice
Floodline on 0345 9881188 for recorded flood warning information in your area or to speak to an operator for advice 24 hours a day.
Sign up for free flood warnings by telephone, text or email from Flood Advisory service– you can also register for flood alerts on Facebook.
Environment Agency's website and media accounts will hold advice about what to do during flooding.
If you feel that you may require sandbags for any future predicted flooding events then contact your local district council who will direct you to the most suitable collection point
The Association of British Insurers helpline is available on firstname.lastname@example.org
National Flood Forum can give independent advice: 01299 403055 / email@example.com
If you would like further advice, please contact the Community Safety helpline on 0800 032 1155