Dealing with a flood

Information and guidance on preparing for a flood, what to do when it happens, and how to deal with the impact.

Don't take risks, stay safe and keep warm

Flooding can happen at anytime, and it often happens when it's dark, and we can't assess any potential danger easily. We can't change the weather, but we can prepare for a flood and know what to do if it happens.

Use this guide to help keep your family and home safe.

Check what your insurance covers

If you live in a high flood risk area check that your home insurance covers flood damage. Flood Re is a UK Government and insurance industry initiative that aims to make the flood cover part of household insurance policies more affordable.

Visit the FloodRe website

Prepare for a flood

There are are number of things you can do in preparation for a flood. Here are our top tips.

Make a flood action plan

  • identify urgent actions, such as moving any vehicles out of flood risk areas
  • consider ways you can block doorways, airbricks or other avenues that could let water into your house
  • make up a flood kit – it could include a torch, first aid kit, warm and waterproof shoes and clothing, any prescription medications, antibacterial wipes, bottled water, food, rubber gloves, and children's and pet food supplies
  • put important documents – like insurance policies and personal items – in a watertight container, and keep them upstairs if if there's a threat of flooding
  • make sure you know how to turn off your gas, electricity, and water supply – if you have time, take gas and electricity meter readings

Sign up for flood alerts

SEPA's Floodline gives you advance notice of where and when flooding might happen.

You can also get weather warning email alerts from the Met Office.

Make a list of useful contacts

Include emergency numbers for notifying faults in your gas or electricity supply, your GP contact details, and insurance company's claim line, including your policy number.

Get some sandbags or other water barriers

You can buy these online and from some larger stores. You can pick them up from these locations:

Springkerse Depot (at the back of Endrick House)
Kerse Road
Stirling FK7 7SZ

Callander Depot
Lagrannoch Industrial Estate
Geisher Road
Callander FK17 8LZ

What to do in a flood

Floodwater can be dangerous as depths and current are difficult to judge. Uneven ground and mud increase the level of hazard.

If you feel your life or property may be at risk, call the emergency services on 999.

In a flood…

  • do not put yourself and others at risk by walking or driving through flood water
  • avoid direct contact with floodwater – it may be contaminated
  • do not use any electrical appliances
  • if you can, move upstairs in your home, and take some emergency food and water supplies with you

Our role in a flood

Stirling Council has no statutory duty to prevent flooding or flood damage to individual properties. But we are responsible for coordinating relief measures, and aim to help residents as much as we can.

Sewer overflows

Scottish Water is responsible for all sewers. Call them on 0800 0778 778 if sewer water is flooding land or property.

After a flood

If your property has suffered damage, it could take you some time to get things back to normal again. If your insurance doesn't cover the cost of temporary accommodation, you may have to rely on friends and family.

What to do right away

Contact your insurer and make a claim. They'll tell you what you have to do and may give you guidance on things you can do to help yourself.

Take photographs of any damage done to your building and to your household possessions. Don't dispose of anything – such as ruined furniture – until your insurer tells you.

Remember, you can use the Stirling Council special uplift service to dispose of large and unwieldy items.

Gas and electricity

Don't switch your gas and electricity back on until you get confirmation that it's safe. Check your meter readings for gas and electricity.

Clean-up and stay safe

Floodwater may be contaminated by untreated sewage. Even after the floodwater has gone, everything that it came into contact with can be a hazard. Follow these simple steps to stay safe:

  • check that your tap water is safe to drink – contact Scottish Water if you're unsure
  • do not eat or drink anything that has come into contact with floodwater
  • wear rubber boots and gloves in and around affected areas
  • sterilise your hands if you come into contact with floodwater and flood-damaged items
  • wash all cuts and cover them with waterproof plasters –see your doctor if there's any sign of an infection
  • don't let children and pets play in floodwater
  • if you accidentally ingest mud or contaminated water and become ill, consult your doctor