Flooding - Frequently Asked Questions
The following information may offer answers to a range of questions members of our community may have following the recent flooding.
Abandoned cars due to the flood - who do I contact?
If causing an obstruction contact the Police on telephone number 101, however they may already be aware of the situation.
Accommodation - I can't return home what can I do?
Try to stay with friends or family until the risk is over.
Contact your insurer, as they might be able to arrange accommodation. Contact your Local District or Borough Council (Contact details for each are below).
Allotments - Will the food I have grown be safe to eat?
We advise that you destroy all food grown that has been contaminated by flooding
Bulky items and carpets destroyed by floods - what should I do?
If you have any flood damaged domestic bulky items such as furniture or white goods, please check with your insurance company before disposing of them as it may affect your claim.
You can take domestic items to local household recycling sites.
If you have no means of transporting items to a household waste site, please check with your insurance company to see if they can help, as costs of removal may be possible to be added to your claim.
Contact your Local District/Borough Council if you need them to remove bulky items on your behalf (there will be a charge for this)
Business Rates - my business has been flooded and I cannot trade. Can I get any help with my Business Rates?
You may be able to get help with your business rates.
Contact your Local District/Borough Council who will be able to advise you. (Contact details for each are below)
Clean up - does the council supply disinfectant etc?
No, the council does not supply disinfectant.
We advise that you clean walls and floors with a soap solution and disinfect with bleach solution.
Alternatively contact your insurer who may be able to help with domestic cleaning services, this will vary from insurer to insurer.
Clothes - All of my clothes and children’s toys have been affected by flood water what should I do?
Make sure you wash affected items on a hot wash (60°c if possible, or the highest temperature allowed on the manufacturers washing instructions) which will destroy any germs that may be present.
Wash them separately to uncontaminated items.
Some may need to be pre-soaked.
Other items that have been contaminated but cannot be washed will need to be professional cleaned. Let the cleaner know that they have been in flood water so that they can take appropriate safety measures themselves.
It is possible that some items will have been too badly damaged to be saved and will need to be disposed of.
Counselling - I am very distressed who can I contact?
We appreciate this will be a source of anxiety for many people in our community.
If you need to seek help please contact:
Contaminated food - What should I do with my spoilt food?
Double bag and throw away all food that has come into contact with flood water.
Double bag and throw away and any food that was frozen but has now been at room temperature for more than an hour.
Either take it to a household recycling site or put it out for your normal bin collection.
Council Tax – my house has been flooded. Can I get any help with my Council Tax?
This will depend on the extent of the flooding and whether you have had to vacate your property.
You will need to speak with your Local District/Borough Council who will be able to advise you. (Contact details for each are below).
Dehumidifiers - do the council supply dehumidifiers?
Unfortunately not. You can obtain dehumidifiers from hire centres.
Electrical items - most of my electrical appliances have been damaged by flood water what should I do?
Make sure all affected appliances have been fully tested before using them again. Get specialist advice from electricians.
Food Businesses - Can I still operate without having running water and toilets?
It is unlikely that it will be safe to do so for more than a few hours.
Contact the Environmental Health Department at your Local District/Borough Council who will be able to advise you. (Contact details for each are below)
Further flooding - Where can I find the latest flooding forecast?
NCC website has a lot of advice and guidance – links to this advice are from our main website
If you are at risk of flooding from a river you can sign-up to warnings from the Environment Agency’s Floodline service.
- Contact them on Telephone: 0345 988 1188 (24 hour)
- Or at the Website: www.gov.uk/sign-up-for-flood-warnings.
- You can also go to the MetOffice website www.metoffice.gov.uk for live weather forecasts for your area.
Health - Are there any precautions I should take regarding the health of my family?
Health risks can be minimised by taking general hygiene precautions and by the use of protective clothing (waterproof boots and gloves) whilst cleaning up.
You should also always wash your hands with soap and clean water:
- after you go to the toilet,
- when you eat or prepare food,
- after being in contact with flood water, sewage or items that have been contaminated by flood water, and
- after participating in flood clean-up activities.
Don't allow children to play in floodwater areas and wash children's hands frequently (always before meals). Wash floodwater-contaminated toys with hot water and disinfectant before allowing them to be used again.
Keep any open cuts or sores clean and prevent them being exposed to flood water. Wear waterproof plasters.
Harmful bacteria may be present in sewage and animal slurry, and this can pass into flood water, although it is likely to be extremely diluted. If you or anyone in your family gets symptoms such as sickness, diarrhoea, or tummy cramps, or if you become ill after accidentally swallowing mud or contaminated water speak with your GP, call NHS 111 or visit the NHS 111 website www.nhs.uk for advice.
In inaccessible areas such as under floorboards it may smell but is not necessarily a health hazard. Get further advice from the environmental health department if the smell persists or if you are particularly concerned about it for other reasons.
As your property continues to dry out, vacuum any loose material and dust on a regular basis.
Very young children should avoid playing directly on timber floorboards or any damaged tiled floors if possible - be aware of the risk of injury from sharp edges on tiles or raised nails in the floorboards until these have been repaired.
Insurance - what should I do regarding my insurance claim?
Contact your insurer as soon as possible.
Try not to move damaged items, as your insurer may need to inspect them.
If possible take photos or video damaged property to give to your insurer.
Insurance – My insurers are refusing to insure me or my premiums are going up?
Go to the Floodre website www.floodre.co.uk for advice and contact details.
Flood Re is a joint initiative between the Government and insurers. Its aim is to make the flood cover part of household insurance policies more affordable.
National Flood Forum
Get in touch with the National Flood Forum (@NatFloodForum) | Twitter
Supporting & Representing Flood Risk Communities. The only organisation that addresses flooding exclusively. 01299 403 055
Loans - Can I get help to purchase food clothing or household items?
Interest free crisis loans are available in some circumstance.
Portaloos - where can we get chemical toilets?
You can hire chemical toilets from hire companies and camping and caravan stores.
Pumps - where can I get water displacement pumps from?
You can hire these from local hire centres. For more serious flooding the Fire Service will deal with situation if life threatening.
Rats - we have seen rats in the flood water what should we do?
Make a note of where you have seen the rats and approximately how many then contact your Local District/Borough Council who will be able to advise you. (Contact details for each are below)
Road Closures - how can I find out what roads are closed?
You can stay in touch with the local news or alternatively look at the Nottingham Travelwise website www.itsnottingham.info for live road incident information.
Sandbags - where can I get sandbags from?
We have limited supplies available for the most urgent and critical instances. Find out more about our sandbag eligibility criteria and contact numbers.
Sandbags continued - What other types of flood protection are available?
Home-owners and businesses are responsible for protecting their properties from flooding.
Sandbags are relatively ineffective when compared to purpose-designed flood protection measures. There are a number of alternative products available, many of which can be stored safely and hygienically inside your property until they need to be used.
The National Flood Forum’s Blue Pages directory lists a variety of products that might be suitable. Their Website: www.bluepages.org.uk
Security - what can I do about protecting my property from burglars?
If you have to leave your property lock all doors and windows providing it is safe to do so and remove all valuables.
Utilities - I have no water/gas/electricity what should I do?
Your utilities may have been switched off for safety reasons.
Do not switch on any utilities until you have checked with an expert that is safe to do so.
- For water contact Severn Trent Water on 0800 783 4444
- For gas contact Gas Emergency Services on 0800 111 999
- For Electric contact 105
Water supplies - where can I get water?
For more information visit the Severn Trent Water website www.stwater.co.uk or contact them on 0800 783 4444.
Volunteering - can I help?
If you can provide help and support that's great. The best way to do this is by:
- contacting the local district/borough council to see what support is already being offered and how this can be supplemented
- liaising with the local community to find out what support they really need
- considering joining established schemes such as the Environment Agency Flood Warden Scheme, or become a British Red Cross Emergency Response Volunteer
Help that isn't coordinated can sometimes inadvertently impact on the response and recovery effort and can be detrimental to those affected by the incident. For example, offering to help someone with clean-up and removal of debris before insurers have attended could leave the individual out of pocket.
District Council Contact Details
- Ashfield District Council - 01623 450000
- Bassetlaw District Council - 01909 533533
- Broxtowe District Council - 0115 917 7777
- Gedling Borough Council - 0115 901 3901
- Mansfield District Council - 01623 463463
- Newark and Sherwood District Council - 01636 650000
- Rushcliffe Borough Council. - 0115 981 99 11