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During a flood

There is some general advice to follow in the event of a flood which will help you keep safe. Remember, you and your family are the priority.

  • Call 999 if there is a risk to life
  • Keep safe and warm.
  • Consider vulnerable neighbours
  • Always follow the advice from the emergency services.
  • Tune in to your local radio station on a battery or wind-up radio or call 0345 988 1188
  • Like us on Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • Remember that flood water is contaminated.

In your home

  • If safe to do so, turn off gas, electricity and water supplies before flood water enters your home
  • If a flood is likely, put plugs in sinks and baths and weigh them down. Block the toilet with a removable bag of sand or soil. Fit air brick covers, flood boards or sandbags.
  • Do not touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water
  • Do not smoke, eat or drink whilst in contact with floodwater
  • Wash your hands after handling sandbags as they may be contaminated by the flood water
  • Secure your property and if it is safe to do so, remove your family and pets to a safe location.

Things to remember

  • Do not enter your property at all if there is raw sewage in it. You should seek alternative accommodation until it has been cleaned.
  • Do not let your children play in flood water.
  • If you use a petrol or diesel pump to remove water from your property make sure the generator is positioned outside and your windows are closed to the fumes


  • Do not attempt to walk through flooded areas. Even shallow water moving fast can sweep you off your feet. There may be hidden dangers such as open manhole covers, damaged road surfaces or submerged debris.
  • Do not travel in heavy rain storms unless absolutely necessary.
  • Do not let your children play in flood water. It may be contaminated with sewage and chemicals.


  • Don't drive through flood water. A foot of floodwater can float a vehicle or hide debris. Your vehicle may be swept away in fast moving water or you may become stranded.
  • Flood water may contain sewage and there is the chance that by driving through it you will spread this sewage onto your car and to surrounding streets.
Page last updated: 15/03/2018
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