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What to do in a flood

2. What to do if you get a flood alert

A flood alert means you need to prepare: flooding is possible.

What you should do:

  • get ready to act on your flood plan if you have one
  • prepare a flood kit of essential items including a torch with spare batteries, mobile phone and charger, warm clothes, water, food, first aid kit, medicines and babycare items
  • prepare to move valuables, furniture and electrical items upstairs
  • find out how to get sandbags from your council and how to use them
  • check you know how to turn off your gas, electricity and water mains supplies
  • keep track of the weather forecast and water levels
  • plan how you'll move family and pets to safety if necessary
  • in rural locations, farmers should consider moving livestock and equipment away from areas likely to flood
  • move vehicles to higher ground if it’s safe to do so
  • avoid walking, cycling or driving through flood water - 6 inches (15cm) of fast-flowing water can sweep an adult off their feet, while 12in (30cm) can move a car
  • wash your hands if you’ve been in contact with flood water which may contain raw sewage


Keep your staff and customers informed.