Flood Advice and News
Burnham-On-Sea, Brean and Highbridge are at risk from flooding
Brean and Highbridge are all located on the Somerset coast north
of the River Parrett estuary and are at risk from extreme tidal
The area has a history of flooding with significant events occurring
in 1859, 1903, 1910, 1926 and 1981 when considerable damage was
There is a flood defence scheme present along the coast protecting
Burnham, Brean and Highbridge. These defences follow the line
of the coast and will protect Burnham, Brean and Highbridge from
most floods, however the Environment Agency admits there remains
a possibility that extreme severe flood events could overtop or
breach the flood defences and flood the areas behind them. If
this were to occur, several thousand properties may be affected.
No defence can give absolute protection; it can only reduce the
risk of flooding.
Flood Warning System for Burnham-On-Sea, Brean and Highbridge
flood warning service is run by the Environment Agency. It warns
of the risk of flooding from the flood banks and walls overtopping,
but it cannot warn for surface water flooding due to localised
for Burnham-On-Sea, Brean and Highbridge are based on tide levels
monitored at the Hinkley Point tide gauge.
to the public at risk
The Environment Agency says a flood warning will be issued to
properties at risk of flooding using loud hailers when there is
a strong likelihood that the flood banks or walls will overtop.
The Environment Agency says it aims to issue the public warning
at least two hours prior to the expected onset of flooding.
will be broadcast by local radio, TV and via Burnham-On-Sea.com,
although the effectiveness of these will depend on the time of
day and the effects on local infrastructure.
to emergency services and local authorities
Environment Agency will alert local authorities and the emergency
services when there is a possibility of the flood banks or walls
overtopping. This notification will be in advance of a public
warning being issued and will enable these services to make preparations
for dealing with a possible flood.
alerts may not be followed by a public warning being issued. On
some occasions, tide levels will begin to fall and a public warning
will not be necessary.
of false warnings
Flood warning is not an exact science. In deciding when to issue
a flood warning, the Environment Agency has to balance the need
for giving the public sufficient time to protect their property
versus the need to reduce the possibility of issuing false alarms.
Public warnings will only be issued as a result of very severe
weather conditions and strong indications that the flood banks
or walls will overtop.
should householders who live in the flood risk area do?
Check that your household contents and buildings insurance
covers you against flooding. One of the greatest causes of stress
experienced by people who have been flooded is lack of adequate
insurance. Research has shown that about 20% of properties are
do you value? Assess what belongings, furniture and fittings
may be at risk on the ground floor. Consider what damage might
be done and whether it would be possible to move items to prevent
damage. You may decide to store certain items of sentimental value
and important documents upstairs. Decide what is important to
you and have a plan of action which you could reasonably undertake.
Sedgemoor District Council provides limited quanties of sandbags
to each property, free of charge, to domestic properties in limited
circumstances where it is determined that there is an imminent
risk of flooding to domestic property. However, householders who
are concerned that their properties may be at risk of flooding
are advised to purchase their own sandbags or consider other flood
prevention measures. Sandbags are available from builders merchants.
there were a major coastal breach, sandbags would be of limited
use, and the situation would be classed as an emergency - for
which a local Flood Warning and Response Plan Emergency Plan exists
which has been prepared by a partnership of all local authorities
(the Somerset Local Authorities Civil Contingencies Unit).
to do if a flood warning is issued:
Alert neighbours and
assist the elderly or infirm
Move people, pets and
valuables to safety
Have spare warm clothing,
a torch, a battery powered radio and water proofs to hand
Keep up to date with
flood warning information on local radio
Put flood boards in
place or contact the local council who will be able to help you
locate a supply of sandbags
Switch off gas and
electricity supplies if flooding is imminent
Do not enter deep or
fast flowing water
Take police advice
on the need to evacuate
flooding has occurred:
Do not eat food which has been in contact with floodwater
Check gas, electricity
and water supplies and equipment for safety before use
Contact your insurers
Ventilate your property
- less damp means less damage
Avoid contact with
floodwater - it may be contaminated
Beware rogue repairmen
or traders who may visit after a flood
more information, call the Environment Agency Floodline on 0845
forecast for Burnham-On-Sea
times for Burnham-On-Sea