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Heavy rain and flooding advice
What can you expect from us during a flood
Before, during and after a flood event, Newcastle City Council will co-ordinate the response across the city, calling on partner organisations including the emergency services. The Council's Major Incident Plan could come into operation with the Flood Control Room opened to synchronise resources and collect information.
Sandbags and preparation
Newcastle City Council has a limited supply of sandbags and our main focus is to protect public safety. We prioritise our use of sandbags to areas of greatest need, eg public highways, public buildings, Council-owned buildings and high risk groups of people.
We recommend that you prepare yourself for a flood by buying sandbags at DIY stores.
The Environment Agency webpage provides guidance on how to make your own sandbags.
General flooding advice
The Environment Agency has produced guidance to help minimise the risk of damage and injury during flooding. Visit their webpages for lots of advice.
You could be at risk of flooding even if you don't live near a river. For example, surface water or pluvial flooding can occur during very heavy rainfall if the ground is saturated or if the capacity of drainage system is exceeded. It is recommended that you avoid walking or driving through flood water, six inches of fast flowing water is enough to knock over an adult and two feet of water can move a car.
There is currently no flood warning service available for surface water flooding but you can still take steps to prepare, check the Environment Agency's three day flood risk forecast for weather alerts.
If you live near the Ouseburn or Tyne, we advise you to register for flood warning messages from the Environment Agency. Flood warnings can give you more time to prepare and take action in case of flooding.
Advice for businesses
Businesses can contact the Environment Agency for information on flood preparation or speak to our Resilience Team on 0191 2114992 for advice on business continuity. Or you can examine the resilience for your business to extreme weather events using a free, online Business Resiliance Healthcheck tool - http://www.businessresiliencehealthcheck.co.uk/
Home and contents insurance is key for getting back on your feet if you've been affected by a flood. If you are worried about flood insurance or finding it hard to get insurance to cover flood damage, you can contact the Environment Agency or National Flood Forum for help and advice. From April 2016 via the National Flood Forum a new scheme Flood Re is available to help people get access to affordable home insurance in areas at risk of flooding. The flood risk element of claims made for homes that are accepted into Flood Re will be paid for buy Flood Re directly to the insurer and the insurer will manage claims with customers as currently happens.
If you reside in Newcastle, and rent as part of Council/Affordable Housing Scheme it is important to understand that the landlord is not responsible for insuring the contents of your home, it is your responsibility to make sure you are covered. We know that paying for insurance in advance can be difficult, details on flexible insurance options is available on our Contents Insurance for Council and Affordable Homes.
Residents who have had to vacate their property due to flood damage are entitled to apply for Council Tax Exemption. The Council Tax Exemption period will be taken between the dates of 'exit of property' to 'return to property'. Residents who are away from their properties for longer than six months will require written proof from their insurers. To apply for Council Tax Exemption, please contact Revenue & Benefits on 0191 278 7878 or complete an online form at www.newcastle.gov.uk/counciltaxforms. You will need to provide details of your home address and temporary address when you get in touch.
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Live updates and Contacts
If you need emergency assistance contact call 0191 278 7878 and ask for "Envirocall."
If you need further information or advice, or if you have questions about any of the information on this page, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.