• 11 December 2015

The Business of Flood Protection

The ongoing extreme weather conditions in Scotland and the north west of England are an unwelcome reminder of the damage and disruption that can be caused by flooding.

In Cumbria over 5,000 properties were flooded and 55,000 people were without power in Lancaster after a local electricity substation was flooded.

Perhaps less widely reported is the severe impact the weather has had on businesses in the affected areas. Many retail and commercial buildings have suffered significant damage and although the cost to Cumbria’s economy has not yet been estimated, the floods of 2009 and 2005 cost over £276m and £400m respectively. With further heavy rain forecast, disrupting the ongoing clean-up operations, further loss of trade is likely.

Brendan McCarthy, who heads up Waterman’s Flood Risk team commented; “It’s important now more than ever that businesses take a proactive approach to flood risk. By identifying their most vulnerable assets and implementing appropriate mitigation measures, businesses can minimise the costs of future flood damage.”

Waterman has a proven track record in helping landowners reduce their risk of flooding. For example, we responded to a serious flooding incident in the Thames Valley in 2014 by identifying the cause of flooding, undertaking surveys and procuring a range of mitigation measures.  These included the installation of flood sensors, anti-flood valves and flood barriers, as well as arranging for building repair work and preparing a site specific Flood Management Plan.

We are currently progressing a detailed Flood Impact and Mitigation Study for a £400m property portfolio at risk of flooding. The study will identify the most vulnerable assets and recommend mitigation measures to protect them. This proactive approach will help to minimise the costs of future flood damage, loss of trade and flood insurance.

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