After one of the wettest summers on record, the environment agency are encouraging householders to get to know their flood risks and make plans to protect their properties over the winter.
It has launched 'Flood Action Month' to try and encourage residents and businesses to safeguard their families, possessions and livelihoods.
The Environment Agency's Flood Executive for the North West, Sally Sudworth, said:
The Environment agency list seven ways which people can make to protect homes and businesses.
- Check your flood risk from rivers and the sea by typing your postcode into the Flood Map at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/flood.
- Develop a flood action plan so you know what to do if flooding is imminent - a useful guide can be found at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/flood.
- Sign up for free flood warnings if available in your community by calling the Floodline on 0845 988 1188.
- Keep an eye on the weather, look out for surface water flooding, and check the flood risk forecast.
- Consider buying flood protection products for your home.
- Prepare your home for flooding by storing precious items upstairs or in high cupboards.
- Keep up to date with flood warnings in your location.
Planners have approved a proposed scheme to protect the town of Cockermouth from flooding.
The town was badly affected by flood waters in 2009.
Now an Environment Agency scheme to construct walls, embankments and flood gates along the River Cocker and River Derwent has been approved.
360 local homes and 55 businesses will be protected. Funding for the scheme has almost been secured, with a pledge from central government to provide £3.3million. Once built, the scheme will reduce the risk of flooding in Cockermouth to a 1% chance in any one year.
Watch Jenny Longden's full report here on ITV News online
United Utilities has been fined £200,000 by the Environment Agency for dumping sewage in the River Keekle.
The company has apologised for discharging quantities of untreated sewage into the river.
A Utilities firm has been fined £200,000 by the Environment Agency for dumping sewage in the River Keekle.United Utilities has apologised for discharging quantities of untreated sewage into the river.