Tom Melhuish 5 min read

Making your business flood resilient

Flooding is an ever-present threat to businesses in low-lying areas. It can be incredibly costly from both a financial and operational perspective to suffer the consequences of a flood breach.

Having a flood plan in place is not enough; you must also look to reduce the impact of flooding by assembling a flood resilience checklist and implementing these measures.

These measures will help keep the floodwater out in the first place and limit the damage if water breaches your business property.

What is flood resistance?

Flood resistance is implementing a strategy that reduces the amount of floodwater entering your premises during a flood. Flood resistance uses various products that are installed to limit the entry points for the water to get through.

For your flood resistance to be deemed successful, you must ensure that every water entry point is protected.

If any of these points are not covered correctly, or you miss a potential water entry point, your flood resistance plan will be unsuccessful as the water will seep through making the other blocked points redundant.

If your business undertakes flood resistance measures ensure that these do not exceed one meter in height. The reason being is that this is the maximum safe height to prevent water from entering, without risking structural damage to your building. Any flood barriers must only sit as this limit.

What is flood resilience?

Flood resilience is an approach that aims to reduce the damage caused by a flood once the water enters your business premises. Flood resilience measures allow the water to be quickly drained and enable the property to be easily cleaned, dried and returned to its normal state.

The business flood resilience checklist

Below is our in-depth checklist to ensure that you are prepared for a flood and have set out the correct precautions to prevent as much damage as you can if a flood occurs.

Sign up to flood warnings

If you are not already, ensure you’re signed up for the government’s flood warning updates. You can sign up for these here at the government flood warning page.

Get flood insurance

Make sure you have flood insurance for your business. It’s crucial to have this as the costs to a business on average from flooding is £82,000, according to the National Environment Agency.

Create a flood plan

Every business needs a flood plan.

Follow our in-depth flood plan guide and ensure that you have every point covered. It’s essential to have a flood plan to limit the damage caused to your business and lasting disruption. Once your plan is in place, ensure all staff members know their role within the plan.

Flood protection

Ensure you have the following covered to protect your premises from any floodwater entering the property.

  • Flood doors. Make sure all the door seals are in perfect condition, and all locking points work smoothly. If they don’t, ensure you book them in for maintenance. Having a faulty flood door can make the rest of the flood resistance plan redundant.
  • Flood barriers. Check the seals of any signs of perishing or damage. Both within the channels and on the boards. If these are damaged, ensure these are fixed and correctly sealed.
  • Automatics Airbricks. These are self-closing, so you will need to remove the front cover to access the parts inside the airbrick for cleaning. Ensure the front cover is also clean and clear of potential blockages.
  • Sump & Pump Systems. Check the power source to the pump is working and ensure the pump is level and upright within the sump. Check it’s correct by filling the sump with water to see if it floats and engages the pump. Then check the discharge pipe is clear of any potential blockages.
  • Non-Return Valves. Ensure all the Non-Return valves are sufficient and look out for any wear and tear. Review any flap gates on the premises and ensure they work correctly.
  • Water Entry Points. ​​Look around your property for any gaps or vents within the brickwork that could allow water to seep through. Double-check the pipes and any cables entering the building are sufficiently covered up.

We hope this guide on flood resilience was helpful to you, here are three carefully selected guides we feel will be of interest to you: