UK Flood Barriers warns residents to be prepared for increased risk of flash floods this Spring

Posted: Monday 28th May 2012

As the Environment Agency warns of an increased risk of flash flooding this Spring, following an extremely dry winter, UK Flood Barriers (UKFB), a leading provider of sustainable, passive flood solutions, advises UK residents to prepare for the effects.

The significant drought conditions the country, particularly in the South and East of England, has been experiencing recently, has led to a substantial increase in the risk of flash flooding, due to rock hard ground causing surface water run-off. The Met Office has issued severe weather warnings for a number of regions in the UK, predicting one of the wettest Aprils on record, after the driest March for 59 years. Flash flooding is indiscriminate and can affect any household, regardless of proximity to rivers or the coast.

UK Flood Barriers warn that this is a symptom of climate change, and that the country needs to re-think the way it prepares for severe weather events, which are likely to become more common and extreme in the future. The Government’s agreement with the insurance sector to provide cover for flooding is also ending in June 2013, which means hundreds of thousands of home-owners will soon not be protected against this increased risk. Flooding represents the UK’s biggest natural catastrophe, and flash flooding accounts for 70% of flooding insurance claims*.

Sarah Vaughan, Managing Director of UK Flood Barriers comments: “The recent weather conditions have meant that the UK is more at risk than ever of flash floods, and this can affect anyone, regardless of where you live, and can cause devastation in a matter of minutes. The Environment Agency has warned that flash floods may be worse this year because the ground is so dry due to the drought so this is the wake-up call for residents to prepare for the worst.

“The financial and personal impact of flooding can be devastating, destroying property and belongings, and many people are unaware that there are simple measures that can be taken to protect themselves. There are a number of products that can be fitted into new and existing properties to stop water entering through the most susceptible areas such as doors and low-lying windows, airbricks, and most importantly, through sewage systems. There is no hiding from the fact that the global climate is changing, and with an increase in both drought and flooding conditions, I urge homeowners, local authorities and those in the construction and housing sector, to ensure they are protected.”

Mary Dhonau, Chief Executive of the Know Your Flood Risk campaign agrees, commenting: “Time is running out to make sure that people in high risk areas are properly protected from the devastation that flooding can cause. If no solution from the Government is forthcoming post June 2013, the responsibility for individual homes is highly likely to fall to the individual owner. The future does not have to be doom and gloom. I prepared in advance, made my home flood resilient, which ensured I did not have to make an insurance claim and was back living downstairs with only three weeks, a far better solution than living in a caravan for up to two years, as many people affected have had to face.”

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