Residents in over thirty properties in Edgware are facing devastation after flood waters swamped their homes on 6th March. Many properties were flooded after a major water main burst, causing significant damage and leaving many homes with no mains water supply.
Simon Ellis, a partner at leading UK law firm Hugh James and an expert in environmental flooding cases, says: “Victims of flooding can face weeks or even months of disruption in their lives. It is difficult to appreciate just how severe the impact of a flood can be on those affected.”
Simon gives these tips to residents to help minimise the disruption caused by flooding:
Don’t enter the water: the first instinct is to move possessions out of the flood water – but if there’s any possibility the water has been contaminated then avoid going into the water, even to retrieve possessions.
Contact your insurance company: if you are insured then contact your insurance company straight away. They will organise for any flood damage to be assessed and confirm what can be saved and what needs to be replaced.
Contact your landlord: if you rent a property, inform your landlord straight away so they can make arrangements with their insurance company.
Contact your local council: if you do not have insurance then your council can provide information on hardship grants or charities that may be able to help.
You may be entitled to alternative accommodation while repairs are carried out and it might be some time before your can return to your property. If flood waters have entered the building this will need to be completely dried out before repair work can start; a process that can take several weeks.
Simon adds: “Homeowners should also remember that even if you are insured, there may be some expenses that won’t be recovered from the insurance company. At Hugh James we regularly see the disruption and inconvenience caused to families over weeks, even months, while repairs are carried out.”