What do I do if my business premises are about to flood?
A flood event can have dangerous consequences, so it is essential that you know exactly what to do if one should occur. Here is some quick advice if your business is about to be flooded:
- Stay in communication
Keep up to date with flood advice for your local area via your mobile device or local radio station. Travel information may be broadcast informing you of any safe evacuation routes out of flood affected areas.
- Find your workplace flood survival kit
For more information on what should go in a survival kit, please click here.
- Put in place any flood defence measures
Any manual defences you have should be fixed in place. This could include mounting any manual flood protection measures – providing it is safe to do so! Do not put yourself at risk to install these measures. If you have sandbags, these can be put around any unprotected points where water may enter.
- Turn off all utilities
Using the correct tools, turn off all utilities to the property if it is safe to do so. This includes gas, water and electricity. Do not touch any electrical appliances that are, or have been, in contact with flood water, or if you are standing in flood water.
- Block plumbing entry holes to the property
If you do not have a non-return valve installed on property waste water exits then put the plug in sinks, baths and showers and place a sandbag (or other heavy weight) over the entrance holes to help prevent back-flow. Disconnect from the mains, any appliances with direct water access (e.g. washing machines or dishwashers).
- Implement your flood plan
Move any items you can to higher ground, away from potential points where water could enter your building. Find out what should be in a flood plan here.
- Stay Calm! Stay Safe!
Flooding can be a very scary and traumatic experience, it is essential that you stay calm and safe during these events. Your number one priority is keeping yourself safe! If you are advised to leave your property at any time by a member of the emergency services then do so as soon as possible and remember if there is any threat to life then you should call 999 immediately. If you have already created a workplace flood plan then you should follow this. Your flood survival kit should contain everything you need to remain safe during a flood event.
- When you leave, do not walk or drive through floodwater
Remember it only takes 30cm of floodwater to knock over an adult and 60cm of flowing water to move a car! Floodwater can also hide hazards such as kerb edges, potholes and low obstacles.
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