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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.

What to do in a flood

  • Never put yourself in any danger
  • If you are at immediate risk of flooding, call 999 and ask for the Fire Service. Find out who to contact in non-emergencies.
  • Block any air bricks to prevent flood water coming in
  • Move pets and valuable items upstairs or to a place of safety
  • Avoid walking, cycling, or driving through flood water. There could be hidden dangers like sharp objects and raised manhole covers, and the water could be polluted. If you take unnecessary risks, like driving along a flooded road when you don't know how deep it is and getting stuck, you add to the burden on the emergency services and may put other lives at risk.
  • Turn off the electricity and gas supply until a qualified electrician or engineer has inspected them. Don’t touch any electrical appliances, cables or equipment while standing in flood water, or any appliances that have been immersed in flood water.
  • Avoid contact with flood water and wash your hands regularly with clean water and soap. Swallowing flood water or mud can cause diarrhoea, fever, or abdominal pain.
  • Check up on elderly and vulnerable friends, family and neighbours in affected areas, ask about their welfare and offer assistance when possible
  • Sandbags are available from most local DIY stores. Most Norfolk councils no longer supply sandbags, but some do have them available in emergency situations:

Preparing for flooding

Clearing up after a flood

Read advice on how to recover after a flood on the GOV.UK website

Further information

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.

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