What to do after a flood: A route to recovery!

Source ? - Flooding with flood warning road sign in foreground

There is now talks about support for those hit by the floods.

However, the Government press release gives more details of what might be coming depending on the areas covered: Government announces support for flood-hit areas – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Rolling news story – Flooding from Storm Babet – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Headline help will be:

  • £500 to flooded households (not mentioning businesses) as emergency aid.
  • 100% council tax and business rate relief for up to 3 months
  • Up to £2,500 grant for businesses to get back up and running quickly.
  • Up to £5,000 grant for property owners (residential and business) to make properties more resilient going forward.

Isle of Wight faces worst flooding in years – Urgent review called by council leader (onthewight.com)

I will keep you posted on developments and where to get locally more information. Below is some guidance on practical issues from IW Council.

As we start to work through the impacts of heavy rain and flooding in our communities, please be advised of the following guidance from the Isle of Wight Council:

Properties affected by flooding

Report any property flooding to the Environment Agency and contact your property insurance company for advice on removal of damaged property from your home.

Unused sandbags Wherever possible, store full bags that have not come into contact with flood water in a dry shady place to use again if you need them in the future. Sacking material is normally biodegradable and will perish if left in place for a long time. It is therefore advisable to empty sacks and keep them dry for re-use. Store the sand in your garden, or yard for future use.  If you do not want to store the sand or the bags, once empty the bags can be placed in your normal household waste and the sand dug into the garden if you have one, or taken to your local Civic Amenity site.

Used sandbags Sandbags tend to retain contaminants such as sewage and oils when they come into contact with floodwater. Ensure you wear gloves and wash hands thoroughly after handling.  If sandbags are contaminated by flood water you should take them to your local Civic Amenity Site (both have same day booking available) and inform the staff that they have been contaminated. Where this is not possible you should seek advice from the council on 01983 823111 as to whether any other options are available to dispose of the sandbags. 

Do not place full sandbags or the sand in your household waste. Do not allow children to play with the sand or place it in sand pits due to the risks from possible contamination. If in doubt, contact the council’s environmental health department on 01983 823000 for advice and the location of your nearest Civic Amenity Site. The following classification guide should be used to identify whether or not sandbags are contaminated. Used sandbags are not classified as contaminated if: Used to retain surface water / ground water, which has had no or short term and limited exposer to sewage. Do not smell of sewage or oil. Shows no visual signs of being contaminated by sewage or oil.  Used sandbags are to be classified as contaminated if: Used to retain raw sewage. Used to protect / retain sources of oil. Used to retain surface water / ground water, which has had continual exposure to sewage or oils.  Smells of sewage or oil. Shows visual signs of being contaminated by sewage or oil.  If there has been widespread flooding across the Island and large quantities of sandbags have been deployed, then the council may arrange for the collection of used sandbags from specific collection points. If this is the case, then the council will provide details to the public on where and when collections will be undertaken.

Waste: Residents should speak with their insurers to see if they will cover waste disposal costs for a private waste carrier and should always should ensure their insurance are happy for them to start clearing the property. Where possible, residents should use HWRC’s (free for householders to take their waste) or the Bulky Waste (£40 for up to 4 items).  In respect of uninsured persons, we will review requests for assistance on a case by case basis to ensure those who are vulnerable and in financial hardship are provided assistance. 

Replacement Bins: Many properties will have lost bins in the floods – in these circumstances free black bins can be made available as well as usual recycling receptacles.

Please see the latest statement from Southern Water:

Following the recent heavy rain on the Isle of Wight (97mm), we have been recovering the network. There is no immediate risk to loss of supply to customers.

Our teams continued to work hard through the night to keep all customers in supply and are in a better position this morning. However, while we fully recover our network back to normal there remains a risk of disruption.  

Our incident teams continue to work on full recovery of the network. We are monitoring the situation and weather pattern so that we can prepare to respond should anything change.

As a precaution we are taking these actions to minimise potential impacts on customers:

  • We have delivered bottled water to customers on our Priority Services Register in the areas
  • We have identified bottled water station locations and infrastructure as a precaution
  • We are using tankers in the area to support the recovery 

We will provide a further update this afternoon before 4pm

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