SEPA calls on public to be flood-prepared over festive period

date19 December 2014

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) is urging the public and businesses to make sure they are prepared in case flooding occurs over the festive season.

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With many also leaving their homes or closing their businesses over the next week for festive holiday time elsewhere, it’s important to take steps to reduce the impact if flooding happens.

In Scotland as many as 1 in 22 homes and 1 in 13 non-residential properties are at risk of flooding, and flooding can also impact on travel routes causing further distress and disruption.

By preparing for flooding you can help reduce its impact and limit any potential property damage. Signing up to SEPA’s Floodline service is an important first step as this provides free advance notification of flooding in your area direct to your phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you are staying at home this winter there are further measures you can take to prepare for flooding:

  • Prepare a flood plan and put a family flood kit together so everyone knows what to      do if flooding happens.
  • Familiarise yourself with how to shut off gas, electricity and water supplies.
  • Keep a list of useful contact numbers including your Floodline quick dial code.

If you are heading away over the season:

  • be aware that travel routes and transport links can be disrupted by flooding (SEPA’s website provides live flood updates which can help you to plan your route in advance)
  • if your property is in a flood risk area, make sure you have left it as well flood protected as possible
  • make sure you are signed-up to get free Floodline messages delivered to a phone you have away with you
  • if action is required, try to have someone local aware and prepared to help

Whether you’re staying at home or travelling further afield over the festive period it’s important to ensure your insurance provides adequate cover for flood damage and it’s worth considering flood protection products that could help to reduce the impact of flooding on your property.

Stewart Prodger, from SEPA’s Flood Unit, said:

The festive period is supposed to be a time of joy, but in recent years flooding has meant a miserable winter for many.

“It is important to remember that, whether you are planning a quiet Christmas at home or expect to travel further afield over the festive period, we can all be affected by flooding – but you can take action now to reduce the impact which flooding can have on your life.

“Anyone can receive crucial time to prepare for flooding by signing up to SEPA’s free Floodline service, and it’s never too early to take action by creating your own flood plan as flooding can happen at any time of the year.”

You can sign up to Floodline at www.sepa.org.uk/floodingsignup or by calling 0345 988 1188/ 0845 988 1188. A host of useful information and tips on preparing for flooding is also available at www.floodlinescotland.org.uk.

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