Is your venue protected from flash flooding?

With bad weather on its way, there’s no better time to review your insurance policy and make sure your venue is covered for a (very) rainy day.

What is a flash flood?

While a flood may last days or weeks, flash flooding is more unexpected and can often leave businesses unprepared. Flash flooding is caused by excessive rainfall, so it’s something to look out for in the winter months in particular – though not unheard of at other times of the year.

Quick flood facts

  • More than 5 million people live and work in properties that are at risk of flooding (The Environment Agency)
  • People in the UK are more likely to get flooded than be burgled
  • 40 percent of small businesses do not reopen after a flood (FEMA)
  • Only 41% of eligible people are registered for free flood warnings (don’t be one of the 59% – sign up here)

How to tell if my venue is at risk of flooding

We’ve written about flooding previously, with a basic checklist any business owner ought to know.

Basically, if you’re close to water such as rivers, lakes, reservoirs and located on a low lying area, the chances are you could be at risk of flooding. Your site may have a history of flooding, or be situated on a known flood plain. You can check the Environment Agency website for more information.

For real time alerts, sign up for flood warnings.

How to protect my business from flooding

Don’t leave it until the flash flood warnings to worry about it. Create an action plan while the sun’s still shining.

There are several practical steps you can take to minimise the impact of flooding. Keep sandbags and barriers on the premises, and ensure all drains and gutters are kept clear throughout the year. You’ll thank yourself later if a flood does arrive!

If your premises is at immediate risk of flooding, turn to your action plan. Turn off all electrical appliances. Try to route the water flow to the basement (if you have one) and pump the water out from there. Move as much equipment, including carpets if you can, to the higher floors of your premises. Most importantly, keep yourself and your team safe.

Am I covered in case of a flood?

If you have comprehensive insurance cover, flooding is one of the risks covered in policies like your buildings and contents insurance. Additional insurance such as business interruption insurance covers you for any lost income if you have to close while you carry out repairs. Chat to the NDML team to discuss your policy and any additional cover you may need.

As a general rule, your policy will cover you for any types of flooding – from heavy rainfall or escape of water from seas, rivers, lakes etc right through to burst pipes. Your insurance will pay out to help rebuild, repair and replace any element of your building or contents that has been damaged.

I’ve been affected by flooding before. Am I still insured?

Your previous claims will be taken into account during the renewals process. Your policy might be a bit more pricey, but there are certain ways to bring the cost down. 

Putting flood resistance measures in place could adjust pricing and terms for some policies. Showing you’re prepared for the worst, and have invested in minimising damage, is always helpful. And let’s face it, it’s better for your business too.

Fitting water resistant doors and window frames is a good place to start. We’ve even heard of a bar that completely lifts up and folds in on itself (wardrobe bed style). It’s an extreme measure, but it’s definitely creative thinking.

Flash flood technology

FloodFlash is a new type of flood insurance, removing the uncertainty of flash flood claims. Its clever sensor fitted on the outside of the property detects flooding immediately, eliminating doubt and ensuring a quick pay out.

Technology such as this gives businesses the opportunity to stay insured without forking out sky-high premiums.

What is Flood Excess Insurance and do I need it?

With so many properties at risk, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find affordable, adequate cover for flooding that doesn’t come with a caveat – a hefty excess. In some cases the flood excess could be financially crippling. But there is a solution.

Flood Excess Insurance pays the excess if your property does flood, meaning you don’t need to worry about finding thousands of pounds to cover the policy excess.  It covers you for up to £50,000, and pays out even if your claim doesn’t exceed the excess.  Contact our team for individual policy information.

In short, if your venue is in a flood risk area or has been affected by flooding before, then we’d recommend looking into Flood Excess Insurance.

Find the right flood insurance for your venue with NDML

Don’t leave your business underwater. Contact our award-winning team to discuss your policy.