More than half of home owners haven’t checked flood risk

Flooding in Sussex last year.
Flooding in Sussex last year.
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More than half the home owners in the south-east haven’t checked on the flood risk of their homes. according to new research.

The new YouGov research identifies a lack of awareness over flood planning and responsibility, despite one in six homes being considered at risk.

As the anniversary of the June 2007 summer floods approaches, people in Britain are still not checking the flood risk of their homes, in spite of increased incidents of flooding in recent years.

Sixty-seven per cent of respondents of the survey commissioned by the Know Your Flood Risk campaign, report that they had never checked the flood risk level of their home.

Only 20 per cent of people check flood risks before moving into a new home.

Even though 55 per cent of people in the south-east have failed to check flood risk this is, in fact, the best region (the north-east is top with 88 per cent).

However, South-East has also bared the brunt of significant flooding events including last year when January 2014 was reported as the wettest January on record, which resulted in over 100 flood warnings being issued in the South-East region alone.

The survey also shows that many do not take the threat of a flood seriously with just six per cent of respondents confirming that they have a flood plan and are sure of what they would do if a flood occurred in their homes. Worryingly, a third of people reported that they do not have a plan and would not know what to do in the event of a flood.

The survey identifies that the public are still not making flood checks part of their research process when moving into a new home; just 20 per cent of respondents currently check the flood risk of their home before moving in, and only 11 per cent check after.

You can find the flood zones and risk level for your home on this Environment Agency map online at environment-agency.gov.uk.

The research went on to identify that there is confusion over who is responsible for protecting a home against flooding.

Respondents considered a range of organisations that they believe have a responsibility to protect homes against flooding, including the Environment Agency (57%), their local council (55%) and the Government (34%). Homeowners (55%), landlords (39%) and tenants (23%) were also noted as being responsible for protecting a home against flooding.

Mary Dhonau OBE, Chief Executive of the Know Your Flood Risk campaign, said: “People have short memories just three years ago in 2014 we had the second wettest summer on record and during the summer of 2007, 55,000 properties were flooded. With such wide-scale media coverage of the devastation that significant flood events cause, it’s surprising that that the public are not doing their homework when it comes to protecting their homes.

“With so many floods in recent times combined with flood insurance problems, it’s worrying that so few people check their flood risk before they buy. It is also interesting to see the level of confusion over who should protect homes from being flooded. It is clear that there is still a need to educate homeowners of their responsibility and to ensure they know where to go to find this information.”

The Know Your Flood Risk Campaign’s mission is to raise awareness of the risk of flooding from all sources. It is one of the UK’s leading online sources for helping people find out the flood risk related to their current or future homes.

A Know Your Flood Risk Report can be purchased which assesses the potential risk and confirms whether they will be able to obtain insurance at standard terms.

The Know Your Flood Risk campaign also provides comprehensive guidance via its website and a free mobile app, which offers information about flood forecasts and warnings, example flood plans, details of how to protect against floods or how to recover if affected by a flood. For more information, visit www.knowyourfloodrisk.co.uk, or follow the campaign on Twitter or via Facebook.

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