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Flood help and advice

Flooding can come from several sources: coastal, rivers or surface water. 42,500 properties are potentially at risk of flooding in Norfolk. Over 5 million people in England and Wales live and work in properties that are at risk of flooding from rivers or the sea.

Find out if your home is at risk of flooding with the Environment Agency's flood risk maps:

Check if your property is at risk of flooding

Preparing for flooding

There are several things you can do in advance to prepare for flooding and minimise the impact:

  • If you live in an at risk area, sign up for flood warnings from the Environment Agency
  • Get to know the flood warning codes and what they mean at www.gov.uk/check-flood-risk
  • Consider whether to buy flood protection equipment to protect your home
  • Make sure your mobile is fully charged before possible loss of power
  • Put together your grab bag and prepare your household emergency plan
  • Listen to your local radio for up to date information and weather updates

Remember, make sure that you take some action when you receive a flood warning message.

Insurance

  • Are you adequately covered for flood risks?
  • Do you have ’new’ for ‘old’ cover?
  • Are your home contents correctly valued?
  • Is your vehicle/caravan covered for flood damage?
  • Keep details of insurance documents in your emergency kit
  • Take photos of your valuables and store them in your emergency kit with your important documents
  • If you suffer damage due to flooding, take photos of damaged items to help support any insurance claim
  • If you do need to have damage to your property repaired, beware of rogue traders. Consider using a Norfolk Trusted Trader. Call Trading Standards on 0344 800 8020 or visit www.norfolk.gov.uk/trustedtrader for more information

Prepare a plan

You can find a household emergency plan template on the Norfolk Prepared website. Your household emergency plan should include details of:

  • Your key contact numbers and details, i.e. house insurance details
  • How you’ll receive flood warnings
  • Where you’ll put flood defences if you have them and need to put them up
  • Where you’ll evacuate to if you have to leave your home
  • How you’ll protect your possessions such as furniture
  • How you’ll protect your valuable and irreplaceable items
  • How you’ll protect your pets

If you own a business, create a business flood plan. Free advice and support is available from the Suffolk & Norfolk Business Efficient Resilience Toolkit.

If you need to create a flood plan for a community group or a school, hospital or residential care home, read GOV.UK's Flood plan guidance for community groups.

Visit GOV.UK for more advice about protecting your property from flooding

Report flooding

Find out who to contact about different types of flooding:

Report a flood

Advice during a flood 

Help us prevent future floods

Surface water flooding happens after sudden and heavy rainfall and appears very quickly.  If we collect evidence as the flooding happens our investigation team will be able to identify the cause of the flooding more quickly and suggest ways to prevent it happening again.  

You can help us by photographing or videoing the flooding as it happens.

Try to show where the water is coming from, the direction of its flow and the full extent of where it accumulates.  If the water enters a property, or comes into contact with entrance defences (like sandbags) show us images of this, or the damage and evidence of the water's presence after the event.

Remember: fast moving or deep water is extremely dangerous.  Do not under any circumstances put yourself in an unsafe situation in order to take images and film.

You can email your images and film to water.management@norfolk.gov.uk or if more convenient to you, upload to our Facebook page, send us a link from your YouTube account or tweet us @NorfolkFlooding.

Read our guidelines for contacting us on social media

Visit GOV.UK for more advice on what to do after a flood.

If the flooding has been contaminated by sewage, contact Anglian Water for further advice and assistance.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)

  • Planning for national flood emergencies
  • Grant aid for land drainage works
  • Funding EA flood management activities

Environment Agency (EA)

  • Ensuring the maintenance of main rivers
  • Monitoring and forecasting river levels
  • Providing and operating flood warning systems
  • Category One Responder to local and national emergencies
  • Lead authority for flood risk management in England and Wales for main rivers

Norfolk County Council (NCC)

  • The Lead Local Flood Authority - co-ordinates local flood risk management 
  • Highways drainage
  • Ditches and balancing ponds on NCC land, also responsible for bridges and culverted watercourses under the highway
  • Category One Responder to local and national emergencies
  • Road closures

Borough, City and District Councils

  • Ditches and balancing ponds on Borough owned land
  • Enforcing maintenance of land drainage by riparian owners
  • Category One Responder to local and national emergencies
  • Providing temporary accommodation in an emergency

Norfolk email contacts

Norfolk Resilience Forum

  • Brings together Category one and Two responders, plus supporting agencies to plan for, respond to and recover from to emergencies in Norfolk
  • Publishes the Community Risk Register for Norfolk
  • Provides emergency preparedness advice

Anglian Water

  • Flooding from public foul, combined and surface water sewers
  • Flooding from burst water supply pipes
  • Ditches and balancing ponds on AW owned land
  • Category Two responder to local and national emergencies
  • Mains Water

Internal Drainage Boards (IDB’s)

  • Provision of flood defences and water level management in low lying areas
  • Maintenance and protection of key watercourses

Parish Councils

  • Advising agencies of local flood issues
  • Ditches on parish council owned land
  • Implement relevant parts of their emergency plan until more help arrives

Private householders and land owners

  • Land drainage on their own property
  • Watercourses where they are the riparian owner
  • Protection their own property from flooding
  • Repairing flood damage to their own property
  • Ditches on privately owned land
  • Do not risk walking or driving through flood water as it can conceal its true depth and contain hidden dangers such as uncovered manhole covers or sewage. Just 30cm of flowing flood water is enough to move a car and less than that could knock you off your feet. In built up areas the waves created by vehicle movements can cause internal flooding damage to peoples' homes
  • Be careful when crossing a river at a ford
  • If you’re caught in a flood, do not eat food that has come into contact with floodwater
  • If you have a long term health condition, think about your medication needs over the next 72 hours. Ensure you have enough medication to see you through 72 hours and remember to take your medication with you if you are evacuated
  • Do not let young children play in floodwater and try to avoid coming into contact with floodwater
  • If you do come into contact with floodwater, wash your hands using clean water and soap and be aware of young children putting their hands in their mouths
  • Check up on elderly and vulnerable friends, family and neighbours in affected areas, ask about their welfare and offer assistance when possible

Public Health England has more advice about flood health risks and cleaning up safely.

Advice given by the Animal and Plant Health Agency states that any Norfolk livestock keeper who has animals at risk from floodwater but unable to move due to standstill measures can move those animals to a safer location.

Following this action livestock keepers will need to phone the Animal Health Regional Office on 01284 778150 to apply for a retrospective movement licence via the duty vet.

Where possible animals should be moved to a piece of land where there are no other animals. The piece of land the animals are moved to will be subject to standstill measures from the time they arrive. 

If you have suffered flood damage to your house, garden or business premises, Trading Standards advise you to be wary of approaches from rogue traders. You could be left with shoddy workmanship, end up out of pocket, or even find problems are made worse.

Here are some simple steps to take to ensure that repairs are successful:

  • Before you organise any repairs, contact your insurance company. Some insurance companies may arrange approved traders to repair damage on your behalf, but if you organise your own repairs, check what will be covered.
  • Avoid any cold callers that may turn up offering to carry out repairs
  • We always advise to use known reputable traders you have chosen yourself, or a member of the Norfolk County Council Trusted Trader scheme, who have all been checked by Trading Standards. You can find a Norfolk Trusted Trader on our website.
  • Ask traders to provide you with written contact details, and consider getting written quotes (not estimates) from at least three traders where possible
  • Keep back part of the cost until the repair job has been satisfactorily completed. This will provide an incentive for the trader to complete the job or put right any problems.

If you are aware of people cold calling at properties offering to do repairs you could email the police to report it or visit the Norfolk Constabulary website to find out more.

If you need further advice contact our partners the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06.

Emergency numbers

District Local Authorities

Report a problem

  • Report a power cut - 105
  • Report a gas leak - 0800 111 999
  • Report a flood
  • Report a leak 
    Essex & Suffolk Water Customers Essex & Suffolk Water customers - 0800 526 337
    Anglian Water customers - 0800 771 881
  • Report flooding from sewers - 03457 145 145

Other useful contacts

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