Communities urged to prepare for coastal flooding

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Weather and flooding warnings issued for Suffolk.

Breaking NewsThe Environment Agency and Met Office are forecasting that gale-force winds and large waves will combine with spring tides and a large surge later on Thursday 5th December and through to Friday. This brings a risk of significant coastal flooding.

REPORT HIGHWAYS FLOODING OR OBSTRUCTIONS ONLINE 

Our call centres have been working throughout the night dealing with emergency calls relating to the storm surge. 

Please help us by only reporting incidents of flooding or obstructions on Suffolk's roads or highways online.

More information

The Environment Agency is experiencing some technical difficulties with its website - Their FloodApp on Facebook is working however.

Latest news from the Environment Agency

View a map of the warnings issued (Facebook app from the Environment Agency)

Met Office Weather Warnings

Advice and guidance from UK Power Networks about what to do if you suffer a power cut

More information about Flooding

Sandbags

Useful Telephone Numbers

  • Floodline on 0845 988 1188
  • Suffolk Public Emergency Helpline 0845 603 2814
  • UK Power Networks 24hours a day - 0800 783 8838 or 01243 50 8838

Further news releases

Suffolk Resilience Forum news release
Tidal Surge UPDATE
For immediate release 5 December 2013 21:00
 

The tidal surge which will affect the Suffolk coastline later tonight is likely to arrive up to an hour earlier than predicted – and may be slightly higher.

The next high tide at Lowestoft was expected at about 11pm.

However, the tidal surge has hit parts of Norfolk about an hour early – and in some cases has been 200-300mm higher than estimated.

Police officers have now finished knocking on the doors of residents whose properties are likely to be affected as they are within the 14 areas subject of severe flood warnings by the Environment Agency.

As of 7pm this evening, approximately 100 people had attended the four local authority rest centres at the following locations:

  • Water Lane Leisure, Water Lane, Lowestoft, NR32 2NH
  • Leiston Leisure Centre, Red House Lane, Leiston, IP16 4LS
  • Brackenbury Sports Centre, High Road East, Felixstowe IP11 9JF
  • Carlton Colville Village Hall, Hall Road, Carlton Colville Lowestoft NR33 8BT

Others have made their way to rest centres run by local community groups in locations including Kessingland and Southwold.

Those that have chosen to remain in their homes are advised that if their property becomes isolated by flood water, they should remain in their property.

On no account should people be considering venturing out to view the tidal surge as they could put themselves at considerable risk.

Agencies across the county will continue working through the night to respond to the threat of the floods.

People are urged to continue monitoring the local media for updates as well as the Environment Agency website. People can also find out more information by calling the Agency’s Floodline on 0845 988 1188.

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Suffolk Resilience Forum news release
Tidal Surge UPDATE
For immediate release 5 December 2013 13:45

Residents living in approximately 1000 properties on the Suffolk coastline are being encouraged to evacuate as a tidal surge travels down the county this evening.

Where possible, people living in the 14 severe flood risk areas, as identified by the Environment Agency, should make arrangements to stay with friends or family outside the affected areas.

Alternatively, the Suffolk Resilience Forum has identified four rest centres in the county for people who are likely to need to relocate as a result of flooding. The locations are as follows:

  • Water Lane Leisure, Water Lane, Lowestoft, NR32 2NH
  • Leiston Leisure Centre, Red House Lane, Leiston, IP16 4LS
  • Brackenbury Sports Centre, High Road East, Felixstowe IP11 9JF
  • Carlton Colville Village Hall, Hall Road, Carlton Colville Lowestoft NR33 8BT

Rest centres will be open from 4pm and people who need this facility are encouraged to make their way to their nearest centre as soon as possible.

Full details of the areas affected by the severe flood warnings, as well as maps, are available on the Environment Agency website. Or you can check the Floodalert App on Facebook.

Police officers are in the process of visiting the affected properties in communities covered by the warnings, requesting that residents evacuate and giving details of their nearest rest centre.

Discussions are ongoing with community groups to identify if other centres need to be opened to meet local requirements.

The following advice is offered for those preparing for evacuation:

  • Stay calm and do not panic.
  • Police officers and / or other officials will try to visit all properties at risk to advise on the requirement to evacuate.
  • If road conditions permit, move vehicles to unaffected areas for example higher ground and ask friends / family if you can share their parking facilities.
  • You will hear about your evacuation point for transport and the location of the reception centre either verbally or by a leaflet.
  • Try to check that any elderly / vulnerable family members or neighbours know about the evacuation.
  • Try to inform family members / friends as to where you are evacuating.
  • Listen to the advice of the authorities and follow any instructions to leave the property.
  • Take special foods and medicines;
  • Switch off gas and electricity.
  • If possible, move electrical equipment and furniture upstairs.
  • Any furniture that you cannot move upstairs, try to raise well off the floor.
  • Do not forget to lock all doors and windows.
  • Block doorways and air bricks – sandbags are not available via local authorities
  • Avoid walking and driving through floodwater, there could be hidden hazards.

Residents in the areas likely to be affected are advised to review advice from the Environment Agency on preparing your property for flooding: and take all necessary steps. People can also find out more information by calling the Agency’s Floodline on 0845 988 1188.

David Skevington, Assistant Chief Constable, Suffolk Constabulary said:

"We are taking this matter extremely seriously and would urge people in the areas likely to be affected to do the same. Rest centres have been established in the county and people in those areas are encourage to find alternative accommodation outside of the affected areas or make their way to the nearest rest centre.”

We continue to work with agencies both locally, regionally and nationally to make sure we are in the best possible position to safeguard Suffolk people.

“We anticipate a number of roads will be closed later today due to flooding. I would urge people to monitoring the local media and the environment agency website to ensure they keep up to date with any developments. "

Agencies involved include:

  • Police
  • Fire and Rescue
  • East of England Ambulance Service
  • Environment Agency
  • Suffolk County Council
  • Waveney District Council
  • Suffolk Coastal District Council

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Suffolk Resilience Forum news release
For immediate release: 5 December 2013 09.00am

As a result of the nine severe flood warnings issued by the Environment Agency in relation to Suffolk's Coastline a major incident (Operation Fulstone) was declared by the Suffolk Resilience Forum at 07:30 this morning.

Senior officers from key agency from across Suffolk have been meeting with the key aim of safeguarding the people of Suffolk and protecting property as far as is possible.

Approximately 1000 properties in the following nine areas to the north of the county are likely to be affected:

  • Lowestoft seafront and docks
  • North bank of Lake Lothing
  • Oulton Broad nr Mutford Lock
  • Aldeburgh and Thorpeness
  • Snape, Iken and surrounding marshland
  • Riverside Business Park and Kirkley
  • Blythburgh and marshes upstream of A12
  • South bank of Lake Lothing from Bourne Business Park to Mutford Lock
  • Southwold and surrounding marshland

Police officers are attempting to make contact with the owners of properties in these areas to provide details of the action that needs to be taken. A leaflet containing key information has been produced and is being handed out by officer.

Precautionary evacuation of properties in these areas is being recommended. Rest centres are being established and the location of these will be available in due course.

A further four severe flood warnings relating to the eastern area of the county have more recently been issued by the Environment Agency and the Suffolk Resilience Forum is now working through plans for the following areas.

  • Tidal Orwell, Ipswich
  • Felixstowe Ferry and Bawdsey Quay
  • Isolated riverside properties on the Deben Estuary
  • Felixstowe Ferry Hamlet and the Deben Marshes

David Skevington, Assistant Chief Constable Suffolk Constabulary said:

"The most recent modelling by the Environment Agency has made it clear that areas of the Suffolk Coastline and surrounding residential and commercial properties are likely to be affected by flood waters. Officers from agencies across the county are working together to ensure the risk to residents in those areas is kept to a minimum. It is important that residents listens to the advice and direction that is given to them by officers on the ground and take the appropriate action.

"Rest centres are being set up to ensure there is somewhere safe for people to remain for the duration of the incident.

"We anticipate a number of roads will be closed later today due to flooding. I would urge people to monitoring the local media and the environment agency website to ensure they keep up to date with any developments."

Agencies involved include:

  • Police
  • Fire and Rescue
  • East of England Ambulance Service
  • Environment Agency
  • Suffolk County Council
  • Waveney District Council
  • Suffolk Coastal District Council