Winter Weather Advice


Flood support schemes 

General information about the government's proposed schemes can be found by visiting the website by clicking here.


The most common sources of flooding are:

  • Fluvial flooding which occurs when a watercourse cannot cope with the water draining into it from the surrounding land primarily around rivers. This can happen, for example, when heavy rain falls on an already waterlogged catchment.
  • Coastal flooding that results from a combination of high tides and stormy conditions. If low atmospheric pressure coincides with a high tide, a tidal surge may happen which can cause serious flooding.      
  • Surface water flooding (or pluvial flooding) which occurs when heavy rainfall overwhelms the drainage capacity of the local area. It is difficult to predict and pinpoint, much more so than river or coastal flooding.                    

If there are any reports of serious incidents of flooding the Emergency Management Team will co-ordinate the Council’s response and liaise with the Fire & Rescue Service and the Environment Agency.

It is not the Council’s responsibility to protect individual homes, householders need to take responsibility.

Prepare for flooding

Prepare for flooding by following some simple steps. Sign up for free flood warnings via the Environment agency (link and information below), find out ways to reduce the impact of flooding to your home and make a flood plan.

  • To download your personal flood plan template, please visit the website by clicking here
  • To download a flood plan pack for communities and groups, please visit the website by clicking here.
  • To download a community flood plan template, please visit the website by clicking here

You can obtain information from the following guides and links to various websites giving advice in ensuring that you are prepared to deal with flooding.  

To find out if your area is at risk from flooding and advice on how to protect your property, please visit the website by clicking here

Visit the Environment Agency website and sign up for Floodline Warnings Direct a free service that provides flood warnings direct to you by telephone, mobile text or email. You can also sign up for Floodline Warnings Direct by calling Floodline on 0845 988 1188.

The Island Resilience Forum has produced a Multi Agency Flood Response Plan (with accompanying technical annex) which provides a framework for the response to floods on the Island.

Flooding - advice from Public Health

As flood warnings and alerts remain in place across the south of England, the following advice is important:

Flood kit:

If a flood has been forecast, pack a flood kit in case you need to leave your home. Remember:

  • Phone numbers, insurance documents, bank cards and money.
  • Medicines and medical devices, hearing aid batteries, glasses and contact lenses.
  • Clothing, toothbrush and personal items. If you have a baby, pack nappies, clothing and baby food.

Protecting your health:

Do not let children play in floodwater and take care if you or your family must go into flood water as there could be hidden dangers like sharp objects, raised manhole covers and pollution.

Unfortunately, flood water is likely to be contaminated with faeces, so it is really important that you:

  • Wash your hands regularly.
  • Do not put contaminated fingers in your mouth.
  • If clean water is not available, use hand sanitising gel or wet wipes.
  • Avoid eating food that has touched flood water or fresh food that has been in the fridge.
  • Clean all work surfaces before and after preparing food.

Carbon monoxide danger

It is important when cleaning up after a flood to never to use outdoor petrol or diesel generators indoors even in the event of a power cut. The exhaust fumes may contain carbon monoxide which can kill in a confined space such as a home.

Carbon monoxide is a colourless and odourless gas caused by faulty or badly installed gas appliances. Symptoms include drowsiness, headaches, nausea and breathlessness. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal.

Also, after being flooded, remember not to turn on gas or electrics until they have been checked by a qualified technician.


People may feel tired, anxious or have difficulty sleeping, if they are affected by flooding. Contact friends and family for support as it can take a long time for life to return to normal, and if necessary, call NHS 111 or visit your GP for medical advice.

If you are concerned about a vulnerable neighbour call Wightcare on (01983) 821105.

General advice

The general advice is if you have been flooded, or live near a river in flood remember that accidents happen in fast flowing floodwater so avoid walking or driving in, or anywhere near, floodwater. In coastal areas and on paths near the sea, keep well away from the edge as large waves and strong winds can easily sweep you off your feet. Water sports in swollen or fast flowing flooded rivers or in stormy sea conditions can be extremely dangerous and should be avoided.

Further advice is available from the Public Health England website.

Public Health England, the Environment Agency and the Food Standards Agency have produced a document for the public containing advice on planning for flooding, what to do during a flood and recovering and clearing up after a flood.

The document can be found by clicking here

Provision of sandbags

It is your responsibility to protect your property. Sandbags can be purchased directly from the following outlets:

  • JA Dempsey 01983 40302
  • Island Roads 01983 822440

In some emergency situations the Isle of Wight Council will, where possible, position stocks of sandbags at strategic locations around the Island. In instances such as these the locations will be issued through local media and through the Council's websitefacebook and twitter accounts.