London Fire Brigade

Brigade offers flood safety advice

11 February 2014

London Fire Brigade has today issued safety advice to people affected by flooding.

Whilst Greater London has generally not been affected as badly as other parts of the country, some areas close to the Thames and other parts of the capital have suffered severe flooding. Firefighters in Croydon continue to pump 24,000 litres a minute from a stricken waterworks.

The Brigade’s Assistant Commissioner for Operational Resilience, Steve Hamm, said:

“If you think your home or business could be at immediate risk of flooding, it’s important to turn off your gas, electricity and water before flood water enters your home.

“It’s vital that you stay well away from flood water outside as there can be hidden dangers under the water. Water often looks harmless but it’s impossible to see how powerful the current is until it’s too late.

“The Brigade is ready and prepared to help with both pumping equipment and rescue gear, such as inflatable boats, if needed.”

The Brigade has issued three top flooding safety tips:

  1. Put people before property.  Move your family and pets upstairs or to a high place if your home floods.
  2. Stay well away from flood water and talk to children about how dangerous it can be to play in the water.
  3. During a flood, don’t go out unless you have to. Remain calm and call 999 if you are in danger.

The Brigade also pointed out that there is also a serious danger posed by carbon monoxide fumes from the indoor use of generators to dry out buildings. More advice about the dangers of carbon monoxide can be found here.

The Brigade has a range of equipment which can be used to help rescue people trapped by flood water, pump water away and protect properties. It has 14 fire rescue units, several of which are equipped with water rescue equipment such as inflatable rescue boats. It also has six high volume pumps.

The Brigade also has four specialist flood response kits, each of which contains rigid flood rescue boats and paddles and rigid floating pontoons, which can be used to make bridges and walkways to rescue people. They contain protective dry suits and boots to be worn by fire crews when rescuing people from flooded areas.

If flooding has been predicted for your area, listen out for information on the TV and radio, and keep an eye on the Environment Agency’s website.

Ends

Notes to editors
Government advice on flooding can be found here.