When adverse weather conditions cause incidents of flooding to both roads, land and property within the area, latest updates for the Sutton Benger area can be viewed on the Environment Agency web portal here: Environment Agency Local Flood Warnings (external link).
Know Your Flood Codes
A FLOOD ALERT means flooding is possible.
A FLOOD WARNING means flooding is expected, immediate action is required.
Who to contact in the event of a flood: www.wiltshire.gov.uk/communityandliving/civilemergencies/floodinganddrainage (external link)
The Environment Agency: www.environment-agency.gov.uk (external link)
The National Flood Forum: www.nationalfloodforum.org.uk (external link)
BBC Travel News: http://www.bbc.co.uk/travelnews/wiltshire (external link)
Or Follow @WiltshireWinter on Twitter
What to do in the event of a flood warning
You may need to react before anyone can get to you, if the flooding is over a wide area or sudden. The Emergency Services, Environment Agency and council can only do so much and may not be able to assist.
- Prepare your property for flooding by investing in flood defence products.
- Prepare a flood kit of essential items.
- Store important documents and treasured possessions upstairs or in a waterproof container, these may include passports, financial documents, insurance details, photos. Make a list of important and useful telephone numbers, eg, insurance company, water, gas, electricity, local authority.
- Check pumps and deploy other flood protection equipment if you have them.
- Fill jugs and saucepans with clean water
- Turn off gas, electricity and water supplies if safe to do so. Make sure you know how to turn them off even in the dark.
- DO NOT touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water.
- All electrical appliances should be unplugged, if you can move smaller items upstairs or to the highest part of the property. If you have time raise large items on blocks.
- Put plugs in sinks and baths to prevent backflow entering your home. Weigh them down with something heavy.
- Move as much furniture as you can upstairs. Items you can’t should be raised off the floor.
- If the emergency services tell you to evacuate, follow their instructions.
- If nothing else a piece of plywood secured with sealant can hold the water back for a limited time, allowing precious items to be moved.
- Try to avoid walking through floodwater. Six inches of fast flowing water is enough to knock over an adult. Manhole covers may have been lifted off and there may be other hazards hidden under the water.
- Don’t walk along riverbanks or cross river bridges in flood conditions as they may collapse.
- Don’t let children play in floodwater – this is dangerous.
- Avoid travel if possible, but if you must drive slowly and cautiously. Floods can turn a usually quiet road into a potential hazard. Don’t drive down closed roads.
- Aquaplaning is much more likely during flood conditions.
- Don’t drive through water if you can’t tell how deep it is. Two feet of water is enough to float a car.
- Drive considerately, the bow wave from your car could flood nearby homes.
- 80% of flood related deaths are in a vehicle. If your car stalls in water, do not attempt to recover it. Leave it and move yourself and any passengers to safer ground.
- If you do have to travel, let someone know about your travel plans.
If you are driving through areas affected by flooding, please follow this advice:
- Don’t drive through standing water – as well as the water damaging your car, there may be hazards under the water you can’t see
- If you see a sign to say that the road is closed due to flooding, remember the sign is there for a reason
- Don’t try to drive through or you might get stuck
- If you are driving a larger vehicle, do not go through flood water at speed as this creates a ‘bow wave’ that can then cause flooding to adjacent properties
- When driving, if heavy rain is making visibility difficult, pull over if possible
- Remember that roads will be slippery during wet conditions
If you know your home is at risk of flooding, prepare a list of useful phone numbers and keep it somewhere safe.
- If your home does start to flood, turn off your electricity supply
- For sewage leaks contact your water company
- If you have an elderly or vulnerable family member or neighbour who is at risk of flooding, contact them to ensure they are prepared and know what to do should their home flood
- If you think floodwater might enter your home, move valuables and other items upstairs to safety