Flooding could affect many households and businesses in Suffolk and can cause danger to life as well as serious damage to property as the risk of flooding in the county is likely to increase in the future due to changes in the climate and increased development producing more surfaces impermeable to water.
Suffolk County Council became a Lead Local Flood Authority following legislation introduced after nationwide flooding in 2007, not all of the flooding during this time was caused by river flooding, and it was apparent that more needed to be done to address flooding from other sources, especially surface runoff or ‘flash flooding’ caused by heavy rainfall overwhelming drains.
The Environment Agency remains the principle body responsible for dealing with flooding from rivers and the seas. As a lead local flood authority, we are responsible for dealing with flooding from surface water, groundwater and ordinary watercourses, and for co-ordinating a partnership approach to flood management in Suffolk. This we do through the Suffolk Flood Risk Management Partnership.
When there is a risk of flooding, the Environment Agency issues warnings through the media; they are broadcast on TV and local radio. You will receive direct warnings from the Environment Agency if you live in an area at high risk of river or sea flooding. You can also view flood warnings on the Environment Agency website or get them via their floodline on 0845 9881188.
However, the Environment Agency flood warning system only relates to the risk from sea and river flooding, not to surface water flooding. Local weather forecasts and the Met Office provide severe weather warnings which indicate the surface water flooding is possible.
If there is any risk of danger to people, property or the environment as a result of flooding you should not hesitate to ring 999.
In addition, Suffolk County Council has an Emergency Planning Unit, which deals with issues such as plans for temporary accommodation and evacuation of houses due to serious flooding and helps people and businesses to recover from a devastating event.
For general information, please e-mail [email protected], or if you can identify the cause, please contact the appropriate organisation below.