When the water is lapping over your doorstep – because there has been so much rain that the earth cannot take it away – then it is too late to start thinking about flood risks. The time to prepare for floods at home is before you move in, or if you are already at risk, then NOW.
- Your first stepping stone to keeping your feet dry, has to be this website provided by the environment agency; www.environment-agency.gov.uk/homeandleisure/. That much maligned quango, does in fact, provide exhaustive data and information about places that are at risk from local flooding. Unless you are aware of the likelihood of flooding you cannot even begin to prepare.
- Your second stepping stone is the old adage; ‘hope for the best and prepare for the worst’. Even if your home is at a ‘small’ risk of flooding you should assume the worst will happen at some time, because of ‘climate change’. Now this is a deceptive – because it is neutral – euphemism for ‘CO2 atmospheric gases are blanketing the globe and warming everything up, everywhere!’. Put a kettle on the stove to boil and the water immediately expands and the molecules vibrate more because thermal energy does that. So the World’s water is expanding and moving around more than it used to. Extreme weather events are the inevitable consequence of this. You can remove a kettle from the heat and let it cool down. Mankind is not going to do this to our World any time soon.
- This stepping stone is to move to higher ground. If you can’t do this permanently, then the next best thing is to have a well-rehearsed evacuation plan, for temporarily moving you and yours to higher ground, at the very FIRST flood warning. You know they are coming in general terms and the Environment agency, together with the Met’ office are very good at letting you know they are coming specifically.
- Have a designated evacuation place in mind for your car(s) and all of your most precious belongings. Make a checklist and keep it up to date and handy.
- Invest heavily now in waterproofing your home. If you’ve ever been flooded, note the high tide mark, and raise it by 20%. Seal every point of water ingress below this level, to submarine bulkhead standards. Yes it will cost you a lot of money, but it will save you a lot of money in insurance cover. And imagine the satisfaction not having to rely on (or even deal with) faceless corporations to reimburse you when the worst happens.
- Convert all of your land around you into ‘soak away’. Tear up and replace the entire tarmac or block paving. It will only be ruined in the event of flooding anyway!
The really vital thing to do, if you are at all at risk of flooding to your home is to be proactive and self-reliant. Nobody is more interested in your flood defences than you are.