CommercialAugust 19, 2021

Property storm advice as UK could face Storm Fleur

Storm Evert hit the UK in the last week of July, causing disruption in the South West of England and Wales. With many thunderstorm and rain warnings in place across Northern Ireland, Scotland and the North of England, the Met Office may name Storm Fleur this week.

The Met Office has stated, “There is a small chance that homes and businesses could be flooded quickly, with damage to some buildings from floodwater, lightning strikes, hail or strong winds”.

This could be a precarious period for businesses, so planning for poor weather conditions can help your business run smoothly and prevent costly claims. Risk Management can be challenging at the best of times.

Stay ahead of the storm

The need to keep your property maintenance schedule up to date is never more pressing than in inclement weather. There is the possible onslaught from high winds and rain that can leave properties worse for wear. Not to mention the threat of flying debris that can cause damage to properties and be a safety hazard for people. So, prepare for the worst and you could save yourself a lot of trouble.

Be alert to flood risk

Time and tide wait for no one, so there’s no time like the present to be sure that you’ve taken the necessary precautions to protect your property against flooding. You should also have a damage prevention strategy in place just in case your property is flooded, despite your best efforts, so that you know your business would be able to recover.

Take positive precautions

Elevate critical stock and equipment off the ground or relocate it to an upper floor

Ensure fuel storage tanks are securely fastened or anchored to reduce potential pollution or damage in case of flooding

Consider raising power sockets, phone connections, servers and cabinets to a higher point, such as one metre or above expected water levels

Develop a Flood Emergency Response Plan (FERP) and subscribe to flood alert warnings, such as the Environment Agency scheme

Inspect building drainage systems at least once a year and regularly check the building for structural defects through which water could enter and seal them

Consider moving any stock kept in open yards to better shelter, and higher ground, wherever possible

Coping with the aftermath

What should you do once the damage has been done?

Report your claim as soon as possible or contact us should you need any assistance. It would be helpful to have your insurance documents to hand when you call. Be sure they have a phone number they can reach you on at all times

We/insurers will be able to advise you of the best course of action, depending on the severity of the damage

Carry out any temporary repairs to prevent further damage but don’t put yourself at risk, and make sure you keep any receipts or invoices for work carried out. However, don’t use your own tradesman for full repairs unless you have been advised by your insurer to do so

It is always a good idea to make a list of any items damaged and to take photos of the damage where possible

You should ensure your safety and keep clear of areas of loose roof coverings or damaged walls

If it is safe to do so, salvage your belongings to prevent further damage – but without putting yourself at personal risk

If there is water coming into the property and it’s safe to do so, move contents to upper floors or higher areas to prevent further damage

Remove any covers on airbricks to enable any trapped water to escape and air to circulate

Never use the gas or electrical supply in a flooded property until a qualified person checks everything and tells you it is safe

Get a Flood Insurance quote

While most flooding incidents cannot be prevented, taking out Flood Insurance help you recover if your home or business are damaged. At The Insurance Centre, we can work with you to find the right level of cover for your family or company. Call our team to on 01524 848506.