Members of the community have a key role to play in managing flood risk. Planning authorities are legally bound to involve the community in the consultation process for planning applications and during the preparation of planning documents.
Homeowners can reduce flood risk to their own property by:
- Adapting their building, to improve its resistance and resilience to flooding, for example by using waterproof materials in the walls and floors or adding door and window flood barriers
- Gaining a greater awareness of flood risk by signing up to receive flood warnings
- Obtaining adequate insurance where available
The Association of British Insurers estimates that it costs around £2,000-£6,000 to protect a property against shallow and short lived flooding and around £20,000-£40,000 to protect a property against a prolonged flood event. Although the costs seem high, it is likely that any measures taken will pay for themselves after a single flood event, as the cost of flood repairs are generally larger than the outlay for flood protection.
The National Flood Forum is a charitable organisation that provides advice and support to flood victims and to those who are at risk of flooding. It encourages collaboration between organisations that manage flood risk and the communities affected by flooding. The National Flood Forum provides further information about protecting properties using flood resilience and resistance measures on their website.
Flood Resilience Community Pathfinder Project
The Flood Resilience Community Pathfinder Project focuses on providing improved community resilience measures for 24 communities across Devon for 2013-2015. The majority of these areas were identified by the Environment Agency as ‘Rapid Response Catchments’ and also includes some communities badly affected by recent flooding. The project brings together project partners, emergency planning officers, community representatives and suppliers of resilience products focusing on delivering a series of community flood action plans. These are supported by the provision of relevant monitoring and warning equipment and training of all those involved. More information about the Flood Resilience Community Pathfinder Project can be found on our Flood Resilience page.