Flood protection

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Flooding can occur at any time for a number of reasons. We cannot stop flooding but we can all take steps to reduce the risks of it. It is best to be prepared. Find out if you live in a property that is known to be at the risk of flooding by checking out the maps on the Environment Agency's website. There are also booklets available with advice on how best to take precautions.

How can I protect my property?

You can read practical advice on how to prepare for flooding and what to do during and after a flood. Information and advice are also available from the Environment Agency’s Floodline on 0345 988 1188.

Flood protection products

If you are in a flood risk area or have a history of flooding, consider using flood protection devices such as door barriers and airbrick covers. The Blue Pages Directory is an independent directory of flood protection and resilience products

It is up to a property owner to protect their property from flooding. The council does not provide flood protection products or financial assistance for residents.


Sandbags are of limited use. In the short term they will deflect running water and filter any contaminants in the water. Where there is standing water and the water level is higher than doors or airbricks sandbags will be of no use. Sandbags will be of no help if your property is already flooded and we will discourage their use in these circumstances unless there is a risk from sewage contamination. If you are in a flood risk area, or have a history of flooding, then you should be considering more comprehensive flood protection.

You can make a sandbag barrier more effective by draping a plastic sheet over the top of the bags and then weighing this down with further sandbags to make a seal. We do not provide plastic sheets or plastic bags. Once the sandbags have been delivered they become the property owner’s responsibility including the responsibility for their deployment, proper maintenance and disposal when not needed.

You can request sandbags for your home by contacting 0845 054 8600. Our aim is to deliver them on the same day, within six hours if high rainfall is predicted (in extreme flooding this may not be achievable), or next day delivery in dry conditions. There are practical limitations to how many bags can be delivered. Sandbags are only available for residential properties, not for commercial properties.

Health advice during a flood

Keep yourself and your family safe during a flood by following the advice of the Health Protection Agency and the Food Standards Agency.


If you need to contact the Flood and Coastal Defence Engineer please telephone 0845 054 8600 or email

See also

Flooding to see if you are at risk of flooding and who manages flood risk in the Copeland area.

Published: 12 July 2012 - 10:51am