Here in the UK we’ve seen an increasing number of homes destroyed and even entire villages left sodden and in disarray by flooding in recent years - to the extent it has become a problem of our times. Whether this is due to global warming causing unusual weather patterns, the dredging of rivers or coastal erosion – or maybe even a combination of all three, with some other local factors thrown in – it’s difficult to pinpoint in many cases.
What is certain though is that householders in such flood-devastated villages as Hebden Bridge in Yorkshire, the town of Carlisle and whole regions such as Berkshire and Somerset have all been left dreading this time of year and the possibility of a recurrence (flooding in the north of the country last year cost around £1.3bn to repair). Also, who wants to live in alternative accommodation for months on end until your home finally dries out and then you have to go back and attempt to recreate that same cosy atmosphere?
So what can you do to arm yourself against the literal flood gates opening this winter? Here are some tips:
If you’re living in an area the Environment Agency refers to as a flooding risk, then it’s a good idea to sign up to their Flood Warning List. Their 24 hour telephone floodline being 0345 988 1188. Even if you’re not in a designated flood risk area, for peace of mind it can still be useful to invest in a Flood Alarm. This means you’ll be alerted ASAP in the event of a flash flood warning so can start preparing immediately.
You may have read this and consider that some of the above is just too much hassle and expense in preparation for an event that may never happen – especially if you’re not on a flood area list or near a river known for breaking its banks. But do consider that, for years now, statistics have repeatedly shown that you’re far more likely to be flooded than you are to be burgled or your house involved in a blaze. Is it really worth taking the risk?