Be prepared. What to do in a flood

  • Put sandbags or flood boards in place to block doorways and airbricks

  • if your home is at serious risk we recommend having sandbags ready prepared - you can purchase these from local builders merchants

  • plug sinks and baths and weigh them down with something heavy

  • keep important personal documents in a sealed bag and in a location safe from flood water

  • be ready to turn off the gas, water and electricity supplies at the mains. Unplug electrical items and move upstairs if possible

  • listen to local radio news and to the emergency services, who will advise if evacuation is necessary. Co-operate with the emergency services and your local authority

  • move anything not fixed down outside your home into a safer location e.g. dustbins, garden chemicals or oil

  • never try to swim through fast-flowing water

  • do not try to cross river bridges or walk along river banks as they may collapse

  • do not put yourself at risk by watching the water, the waves could be dangerous.

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Who is responsible?

Responsibility for flooding and drainage issues lies with a number of agencies, as shown below.

  • Surrey County Council is responsible for highway flooding issues (floods not caused by rivers)

  • You can report emergency flooding issues and issues related to main rivers to the Environment Agency on 0800 807 060. If you would like information on flooding, please call the Environment Agency Floodline on 08459 881 188. To find out if your property is at risk of flooding use the Environment Agency's postcode search facility.

  • Woking Borough Council can be contacted on 01483 755855 for information on `ordinary' watercourses. Ordinary watercourses are natural streams, rivers or ditches that are not main rivers.

  • If your enquiry relates to a public sewer please contact Thames Water or alternatively Affinity Water (formerly Veolia Water), depending upon who covers your area).

  • Problems related to a private sewer, private watercourse or private land, are the responsibility of the landowner. To find out who owns an area of land please contact the Land Registry.

  • Are you a `Riparian Owner'? This term describes anyone who owns a property alongside a watercourse of any description. It is the responsibility of the riparian owner to deal with water running through modified areas of property within their own land. The owner could do this in a variety of ways but has the responsibility to pass on the flow of water without obstruction, pollution or diversion affecting the rights of others. Your solicitor will tell you if the rights are owned by anyone else and the Environment Agency provides some guidance on your responsibilities.

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Be prepared and protect your home

Woking Borough Council encourages residents to be prepared for flooding - the Environment Agency offers some quick and simple advice that everyone can take to protect your home from flooding.

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Flood Warnings Direct

Residents can sign up to Flood Warnings Direct - a free service that provides flood warnings direct to you by telephone, mobile, email, SMS text message, fax or pager. If you've not signed up, please telephone the Environment Agency on 0845 988 1188.

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Returning to normal following a flood

If your home has been affected by flooding you will want to return to normal as soon as possible. The Environment Agency provides good advice on cleaning up after a flood and how to get your home back to normal.

Please contact Woking Borough Council on 01483 755855 if you require any further information.