The risk of flooding remains a very important issue across West Sussex with over 100,000 properties at risk. The coast line of the county is generally low-lying and many of our towns and villages are located near rivers. As a result we are vulnerable to flooding both from the sea and from the County’s rivers following heavy rainfall from surface water run-off and groundwater.
Due to climate change the risk of flooding will increase as sea levels rise, winter rainfall increases and flash storms become more frequent. This means more people will be at risk more often. Flood protection measures are in place in many areas across the County. However, the risk of flooding cannot be completely eliminated nor can flood damage be entirely prevented.
The County Council has a comprehensive Flood Response Plan that can be activated as soon as the Environment Agency advises widespread flooding is likely. The plan includes evacuation, setting up rest centres, transport and recovery. However, the responsibility for protecting property from flooding rests with individuals.
There are three key steps to helping you protect your property and improve your personal safety: check if you are at risk of flooding; sign up for flood warnings; and take action.