The Suffolk Resilience Forum is continuing to urge residents and businesses in coastal areas of Suffolk to be prepared as severe flood warnings are issued for the east coast.
Specific areas have been identified as being at high risk of flooding, which includes around 1,880 properties, and plans are underway for the evacuation of homes, businesses and other properties in those areas.
There are two times today, Friday 13 January, when specific locations are at greatest risk of flooding.
Around 11.30am – midday today, the Environment Agency is anticipating a flood risk in the following areas:
· Felixstowe Ferry and Bawdsey Quay
· Felixstowe Ferry Hamlet and the Deben Marshes
· Isolated riverside properties on the Deben Estuary
· Tidal Orwell at Ipswich Quay
Where possible, anyone living in those areas should make arrangements to stay with friends or family outside of the affected areas. Alternatively, the Suffolk Resilience Forum has identified rest centres for people who are likely to need to relocate.
A rest centre at Brackenbury Sports Centre High Road East, Felixstowe, Suffolk, IP11 9JF is now open (as of 8am this morning).
Police officers are visiting homes in affected areas, to provide details of local rest centres and an information leaflet.
The following advice is offered for those people 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 be given details 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 with you.
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.
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.
Superintendent Kerry Cutler, of Suffolk Constabulary said “We would urge anyone who may be currently considering going to the coast to watch the tidal surge, do not do this. This would be incredibly dangerous not only for those people but also as it may cause disruption and delay for emergency response teams and vehicles who are supporting local communities in these areas.”