SPECIFIC INCIDENT GUIDANCE
FLOODING AND OTHER SEVERE WEATHER
Different organisations have responsibilities for different consequences of flooding:-
Coastal and main river fluvial flooding. Arun District Council maintains the beaches along its coastal boundary with the EA and immediate response for flooding behind the beach is normally undertaken by Arun District Council.
Ordinary Water Courses. The land owner of the water course has primary responsibility. Arun District Council can initiate legislative proceedings for the maintenance of ordinary watercourses. The Council maintains the watercourses on its land and will respond to flooding from these watercourses.
Critical Ordinary Water courses. The Environment Agency has a responsibility to maintain these water courses. The Council will respond to areas water runs out of the bank.
Flooding of drains & sewers. The Water Company (Portsmouth, Southern Water, & South East Water Kent & Sussex Region)
Flooding on trunk roads eg A27 from whatever source. The Highways Agency (Inter-route).
Other Public Roads. West Sussex County Council Highways
Arun District Council:
The welfare/shelter of people made homeless as a result of flooding
Care of communities isolated or severely affected by flooding
Assistance with salvage and drying out of property
Advice regarding pollution eg contamination of food stocks
The County Council:
The drainage of surface water on the highway
Social Services provision and support
West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service may respond to:
Provide immediate rescue
Pumping operations only to facilitate emergency rescue at flooded properties
Flooding incidents affecting electrical supplies in premises
The Environment Agency:
Issues flood warnings
Advises and assists in river and coastal flood defences and environmental protection
Sewerage, where they have a service provider/customer relationship.
The evacuation of the public if they are endangered.
FROM The Environment Agency (EA) issued by email and fax. These warnings relate to the River Arun and local coastline.
In Office Hours: The EA issues warnings to the Emergency Coordinator, the Emergency Planning Officer, the Resources Director, the Head of Infrastructure, Works and Engineering Services.
Out of Hours: The Emergencies Coordinator receives a telephone/pager message from the Environment Agency, and the Standby Superintendent is also alerted by phone.
Warnings to the Public: The EA have responsibility for warning the public and do this in a number of ways; eg: automated telephone flood warnings and the deployment of personnel to affected areas.
People without internet access can call the 24-hr floodline: 0845 988 1188.
Flood Warning Codes
Flood Watch flooding is possible, be aware, be prepared, watch out!
Flood Warning flooding of homes, businesses and main roads is expected in the area, act now!
Severe Flood warning severe flooding is expected in the area, there is imminent danger to life and property, act now!
Potential Flood Areas. The following areas are at risk of flooding. The District Council is satisfied that there are minimal risks to human life created by these flood risks from ordinary watercourses but emphasises the need for the Environment Agency's flood warnings to be heeded.
Areas within the District which have a history of flooding include the following:
A29 Lidsey Farm junction, Sack Lane/Shripney Road- highway flooding
Nyton Road, Junction A29 Westergate/Northfields Lane off Nyton Road- critical ordinary watercourse
Watercourses above Barnham Lane North East to Walberton -critical ordinary watercourse
Watercourses above Yapton Rife, Yapton Road - river flooding
Felpham Way, Felpham- highway flooding
Yapton Lane (B2122) between Middleton Rd & A259, Yapton
Horsemere Green Lane, Climping -Highway flooding
Angmering village- critical ordinary watercourse
Fluvial Flood Warning Areas
Flood warnings relating to river flooding are now issued on the basis of river names and specific locations enabling those in receipt of the warnings to clearly understand the areas referred to.
Sandbags Policy on Provision and Distribution
To the Public.
The District Council does not issue sandbags to members of the public.
Property owners have the responsibility to protect their own properties. If they consider their properties are at risk of flooding, they should purchase sandbags from builders' suppliers and merchants.
To the Emergency Services
The Council will if possible respond to requests for sandbags from the Emergency Services.
Property owners should be advised that they shall be responsible for removal and disposal of sandbags. A leaflet detailing how to use and dispose of the sandbags will be distributed when appropriate.
The National Flood Forum
Provides support and advice to communities and individuals that have been flooded and helps the formation of community groups in areas at risk of flooding.
The National Flood Forum also provide in their free “Blue Book” details of patent flood preventive items, measures and techniques. For more information go to: www.floodforum.org.uk
Coastal Pollution - General
The Council will consider dealing with small pollution incidents along the coastline. Pollution for any amount must be reported to the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA). Where the pollution is more wide spread, and the MCA authorise the use of their resources, the County Council will take on the coordination role by:-
Where the pollution is primarily affecting West Sussex, the County Council will normally establish a Shoreline Response Centre (SRC) at County Hall. The MCA and other organisations will attend the SRC to assist.
Major Coastal Pollution. In the event of a major pollution incident whether by oil or other hazardous substances at sea that poses a serious threat to people or property, a Shoreline Response Centre (SRC) will be put in place by WSCC in conjunction with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).
The purpose of an SRC is to provide a coordinating body through which local authorities can discharge their responsibilities for resopnding and mitigating pollution of the shoreline.
Major Sewage Pollution
In the event of major sewage pollution on or likely to affect the council's shoreline, undertake the action as for a coastal oil pollution response. It is important however to refer to the Solent Forum document in the Emergency Centre which outlines the procedures for Gross Sewage Pollution within or adjacent to bathing water.
Procedure for Managing Chemical Containers.
A protocol has been agreed for the response and disposal of chemical containers washed up on the Coastline . The initial report may come from a number of sources, or be reported to any of several different agencies. Abandoned chemical containers not on the coastline should also be reported to the Emergency Coordinator or to the Standby Superintendent if out of office hours.
The Council to inspect and arrange removal;
If upon examination it is suspected that the contents are "potentially hazardous", and the container is leaking or unstable, the response should immediately be upgraded.
Potentially Hazardous i.e. there is an indication that the container may be leaking a dangerous or unknown substance:
Inform Fire and Rescue Service - to inspect and attempt to identify the content
The Council to isolate area with assistance from Sussex Police or West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service as necessary.
Those attending should approach from upwind, and if without appropriate personal protective equipment should remain at a safe distance at all times.
If WSFRS establish that the container is non-hazardous, action reverts to for "Apparently Non-Hazardous" as detailed above.
If the container appears upon inspection to be hazardous, further action should be:-
1. WSFRS cordon off hazardous area
2. WSFRS inform Environment Agency - to provide advice
3. WSFRS inform Health Authority - to provide public health advice
4. The Council inform Police - to assist with beach closure and security (if required).
5. The Council to inform Maritime Coastguard Agency Counter Pollution Branch
It is the responsibility of the land owner, often the Local Authority, in whose area the container is found, wherever possible before the next high tide, to remove the container so as to avoid it beaching elsewhere.
Examined containers must not be left unattended as someone could interfere with them.
Attendance is not required where the contents are not considered hazardous.
The container should be suitably labelled and then arrangements made for removal on the next working day by the responsible land owner as indicated above.
The Police, WSFRS and Council's Standby Superintendent should be informed accordingly.
The Council will arrange for collection. Out of hours, this is by instruction of the Standby Superintendent.
Toxic Contamination. The District Council's response to an incident involving a widespread toxic release in the community, including asbestos, will be led by the Environmental Health Service.
Warning and informing the public. Management of public information is a very important issue and should be co-ordinated with the Emergency Services.