1. ITV Report

Flood advice for homeowners

The Environment Agency offers the following steps to prepare for flooding at your home. See the advice on their website here.

If you are already flooded, advice on what to do next and how to stay safe is here

Call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 or 0845 988 1188

If your home has not yet flooded, but is in danger of doing so:

A towpath next to the River Thames in Old Windsor Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire
  • Sign up for flood warnings - if you think your area is likely to flood, you can receive warnings by phone, text or email, just go to the link here
  • Find out how to make a flood plan
A house surrounded by flood waters near Chertsey Bridge in Chertsey Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire/Press Association Images
  • Prepare your home for flooding. The Environment Agency suggests you contact local builders' merchants for stocks of bags and sand. They have a guide on how to use sandbags here
  • Find out more about keeping floodwater out here
Advice on the correct use of sandbags is available on the Environment Agency website Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Prepare your property in advance to reduce the damage floodwater might cause inside, making drying out and cleaning up quicker and easier.

  • Shelving: keep irreplaceable or valuable items on high mounted shelves.
  • Home entertainment: fix your audio-visual equipment such as your TV and hi-fi to the wall, about 1.5 metres above floor level.
  • Skirting: fit water-resistant skirting boards or varnish wooden ones.
  • Walls: use horizontal plasterboard or lime-based plaster to dry-line, instead of gypsum. Get a special draining system for cavity walls.
  • Floors: lay tiles with rugs rather than fitted carpets.
  • Internal doors: fit synthetic or waxed doors, or make sure wooden doors are easy to remove before a flood.
  • External doors and windows: install synthetic or waxed windows and doors, or varnish wooden ones.
  • Kitchen and bathroom: use water-resistant materials such as stainless steel, plastic or solid wood rather than chipboard. Where possible raise fridges and other appliances on plinths.
  • Electricals: raise electrical sockets, fuse boxes, controls and wiring to at least 1.5 metres above floor level. If re-wiring, bring cables down the wall to the raised sockets so cabling isn’t affected by flood water.
  • Large items: buy extra large, sealable bags that you can use to protect items that are difficult to move such as electrical goods and sofas.
A flooded River Thames at Staines Credit: Neil Lancefield/PA Wire
  • Know your rights. If you live at the water's edge, make sure you know your rights and responsibilities
  • Help with insurance if you're in a high-risk area is available here

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