Floods Call Utilities Companies Into Action

by : Andy Adams

In recent years there have been more and more instances of flooding in the UK, the most recent of which in June was estimated to have affected 31,200 homes and 7,000 businesses in the Midlands and Northern England. Whilst many have attributed the increase to climate change there's no escaping the fact that this once 'freak' occurrence has now become more prevalent in certain areas of the country.

If you live in an area which is susceptible to flooding it is said that you live in a flood plain. When buying houses this is one thing to avoid, assuming that you don't get sun all year round. The trouble is that people who bought houses which weren't in flood plains are now finding that with these climate changes that their homes are now at risk as well.

The problem with flooding is that it has the capacity to cause major damage to not only homes but utility suppliers of such services as Water, Electricity and Gas. Obviously if water gets in your house then chances are it will damage electrical goods and power outlets, people in risky areas are advised to try and elevate their power outlets, where possible to have sockets and switches raised up.

People who experience flooding in their homes are also advised to turn off gas and electricity supplies from the main breaker and inlet pipe. This should be done as soon as possible when the flooding starts, so it is best to keep an eye on the news or on the radio for any advance flood warnings so you have plenty of time to cut off your electricity and save expensive repairs in the future.

Once you are able to return safely home then check with your gas and electricity suppliers before turning them back on, the lines may not be clear and you could cause more damage, luckily most suppliers will come out free of charge after flooding to check supplies are safe to continue use.

It is not just the supplies in the home that can be affected, the recent floods over the summer managed to damage a water treatment plant at Tewkesbury and an Electrical sub station in Walham, there was quite an outcry over this as it was felt there were not enough precautions taken since it was known that they were built on these flood plains.

The Environment Agency has put pressure on the government to make sure water, gas and electricity stations are sufficiently protected in the future, but obviously some responsibility falls to the customer themselves, if you are not sure about what you need to do to minimize the risk from unnecessary damage after flooding then contact your gas and electricity supplier especially if you live on a flood plain or near water sources such as rivers or lakes. They should be able to let you know exactly what you can do to aid them in preserving your supply.