Flooding

Advice and information relating to flooding including where to go for flood protection advice and travel information and appropriate health precautions in times of flooding.

Visit GOV.UK's website for advice on how to prepare for a flood. This includes how to find out if you are at risk from flooding, how to sign up for free flood warnings in your area and how to prepare a personal flood plan.

For help and advice call Floodline on 0345 988 1188.

Who to contact in the event of a flood

River FloodingEnvironment Agency (24-hour Floodline0345 988 118
Roadside Gullies (if roadside gullies are blocked and water cannot enter them) Surrey County Council03456 009 009
Sewer FloodingThames Water's 24-hour Customer Service 0800 316 9800
Assistance to buy essential items (criteria apply)Citizen's Advice Bureau08444 111 444

Utilities

If you know you might need additional support in the event of a power cut, sign up to UK Power Network's Priority Services Register.

To report a loss of power or if you are concerned about safety, please contact the UK Power Network on 0800 316 3105 or from a mobile on 0333 32 32105 or via Twitter @UKPowerNetworks. You can also visit the UK Power Network website to see if they are aware of a power cut in your area or for general help and advice due to a power cut.

  • National Grid can be contacted on 0800 111 999 or via Twitter @nationalgriduk
  • To inform the Environment Agency of a flooding incident please call 0800 807060
  • Thames Water can be contacted on 0800 316 9800 and for Sutton and South East Water, call 01737 772000
  • In an emergency, please dial 999

Sandbags

Sandbags are not a very efficient way of protecting your property. Another way to protect your property is by using proprietary barriers (see 'Flood protection' in 'Downloads'). However, MVDC does maintain a stock of sandbags  all year round at the depot site on Curtis Road, Dorking.

Alternatively, sandbags can be bought from most builders' merchants. In addition, from 1 December to 1 March each year, a small supply of sandbags will be maintained at the following locations on a first come, first served basis.

  • Curtis Road Depot, Dorking 
  • Park House, Leatherhead 
  • The Vineries Garden Centre, Lower Road, Bookham 
  • Lory's Farm, Charlwood Place, Norwood Hill Road, Charlwood

Please note that MVDC cannot guarantee the supply of sandbags during periods of high demand and residents living in those areas at risk of flooding should try to make their own flood protection arrangements in the first instance. MVDC does not deliver sandbags to individual households.

For more information, please call 01306 885001.

Disposal of Sandbags

After a flood you should dispose of sandbags that have been contaminated with petrol, oil, diesel or sewage. You can do this at a Community Recycling Centre. Please make sure that you wear rubber gloves to prevent possible infection and wash hands thoroughly afterwards.

Those that have not been contaminated should be kept for reuse. To prolong their life it is best to store them under cover so that they can stay dry.

Sandbags are heavy: take care when filling and handling sandbags to avoid injury.

Flood protection

There are other ways to protect your property, using proprietary barriers. More information can be found on the GOV.UK website.

The British Standards Institution has given a 'Kitemark' to various flood protection products and a listing can be found on the BSI website.

The National Flood Forum website also has a directory of flood protection products called the Blue Pages and a protection adviser page.

There is no guarantee that any flood protection system will work and it should be made clear that neither MVDC nor the government nor the Environment Agency endorses a particular product or supplier.

It is the responsibility of the purchaser to ensure the products are appropriate for their property, fit for purpose, correctly fitted and meet their specific needs. Also, be careful to consider all the ways which water can enter your property. For example, in addition to flood boards across your doorways, you may also need to install airbrick covers and non-return valves on your drainage system.

Flood Plans

Sign up for free flood warnings in your area online through GOV.UK or call Floodline on 0345 988 1188.

The better prepared you are, the better you'll cope with the effects. The Environment Agency has prepared a handy template to help you make your own flood plan that you can download and print (see 'Downloads').

In addition:

  • have a few sandbags or floorboards prepared to block doorways and airbricks
  • make up a flood kit, including a torch, blankets, waterproof clothing, wellingtons, a portable radio (battery operated), first aid kit, rubber gloves and key personal documents. Keep it upstairs, if possible
  • talk about possible flooding with your family or those you live with.
  • make sure you know where to turn off your gas and electricity
  • what about your pets? Where will you move them to if a flood is on the way?
  • think about your car. Where could you move it to in the event of a Flood Warning?
  • get into the habit of storing valuable or sentimental personal belongings upstairs or in a high place downstairs
  • think about medication. In the event of a flood, you'll still need to take it

For information about flood warnings in force in your area, call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 and, when prompted, enter the following quick-dial number which relates to all flooding relating to the River Mole: 01124212

The Blue Cross has produced a leaflet about looking after your pets during floods.

Traffic and travel

Surface water on roads could make driving conditions hazardous. Do not travel in heavy rain storms unless absolutely necessary. Motorists should not attempt to drive through flooded roads or fords - two feet of water will float your car.

Manhole covers may have come off and there may be other hazards you cannot see. The Highways Agency have the lat­est traf­fic infor­ma­tion for England's strate­gic road net­work on its website.

Information on bus service disruption due to adverse weather, can be found on the Surrey County Council website.

Information on flooding and road closures due to the adverse weather can be obtained by following @surreytravel on Twitter.

Utilities

If you know you might need additional support in the event of a power cut, sign up to UK Power Network's Priority Services Register.

To report a loss of power or if you are concerned about safety, please contact the UK Power Network on 0800 316 3105 or from a mobile on 0333 32 32105 or via Twitter @UKPowerNetworks. You can also visit the UK Power Network website to see if they are aware of a power cut in your area or for general help and advice due to a power cut.

  • National Grid can be contacted on 0800 111 999 or via Twitter @nationalgriduk
  • To inform the Environment Agency of a flooding incident please call 0800 807060
  • Thames Water can be contacted on 0800 316 9800 and for Sutton and South East Water, call 01737 772000
  • In an emergency, please dial 999

Health advice

Public Health England provides overall public health support, services and advice on a local level. They have issued useful clean up advice and also advice relating to mental health (see 'Downloads')

The advice from Public Health England is that any flood water should be regarded as potentially contaminated and precautions should be taken to reduce the risk of infections.

  • avoid contact with floodwater and wash your hands regularly
  • seek medical advice for illness and mention the flood if you see your GP within ten days for abdominal complaints
  • clean work surfaces before and after preparing food
  • for food safety advice after flooding, including how to make baby food without mains water, contact the Food Standards Agency
  • do not eat food that has touched flood water and don't eat fresh food from the fridge or freezer if your electricity has been turned off

Damage caused by flooding

If furniture or property is damaged by flooding, please contact your insurers. It is advisable not to dispose of any flood-damaged items until your insurers have agreed that you should do so. The Association of British Insurers has produced a leaflet Responding to major floods: what to expect from your home insurer, available on their website (see 'Downloads').

Any additional council tax incurred as a result of flooding, should be claimed through household insurance. If your property is not covered by insurance, you can contact MVDC for financial support through the Discretionary Hardship provision fund. MVDC will consider granting a discount equivalent to its element of the council tax bill (approximately 10% of the full council tax payable) for the property that has been flooded if this is not covered by insurance. The discount will be applied direct to the council tax account for the period that the relevant property has been vacated, and is subject to remedial works taking place to make it habitable again up to a maximum of twelve months.

If a property is substantially emptied of furniture, no council tax would be due for a period of 28 days, after which full council tax would again need to be paid. If the property remains furnished but you move to alternative accommodation, you would still be liable for council tax at the full amount, and could potentially be liable for council tax at both addresses. This is where insurance companies should step in, but if not, MVDC can help.

Each case will be considered on its own merits. Please contact Revenues on 01306 879293 for more information.

Last Updated: 04/09/2017




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