Useful information if your house has been affected by flooding.
If you have immediate support needs, you should contact the Advice Line on 01302 735688.
Community Recovery Grant
South Yorkshire Community Fund
The South Yorkshire Flood Disaster Relief Appeal Fund is now accepting phase two applications from those who have been impacted by the floods:
Council Tax Exemptions
If flood water entered your property, you won’t pay council tax for at least 3 months. The exemption will continue until you’re back in your property.
The exemptions will be applied automatically by the council to any property that has received the Community Recovery Grant.
White Goods and Furnishings
There have been some new items donated by local residents and businesses which can be made available.
Property Flood Resilience (PFR) Recovery Support Scheme
Rebuilding a home or business after it has been affected by flooding is a stressful time and there can be many complex decisions to make.
The Government is now making funding available to allow flood-hit homes and businesses to receive up to £5,000 (including VAT) to make changes on properties and reduce damage levels should flooding reoccur.
The purpose behind these grants is to help property owners strengthen their homes and businesses for the future. If flooding should happen again then the damage levels should be considerably lower and it will be much quicker to return back to homes and businesses.
The grant is to fund the additional cost, over the costs of a standard property repair, using materials which are more resistant and resilient to damage from flooding or rearranging the layout of the property, for example, changing the positions of electrical sockets.
This work is known as Property Flood Resilience (PFR) and they are measures which householders and businesses can install in their properties to increase their resilience to flooding. This action helps stop water entering a property, or if it does, adapting the property to reduce the amount of damage it causes.
Examples of PFR include installing airbrick covers, using flood resistant coatings on walls and using flood barriers to stop water coming through doorways. A set of resilience measures and indicative costs can be found here:
- Resilience Measures Eligible Expenditure
- Download (153KB - PDF)
Further criteria is below. Owners are eligible for the scheme:
- Properties must have been severely damaged by flooding between 7 November and 18 November 2019 – these include static caravans which are primary residences and registered on the electoral role.
- Garages, outhouses, storage areas and empty and second homes are not eligible. Basements or cellars not used as part of the habitable or business area of a property are also not eligible.
In some cases a collaborative application would work better rather than treating each property individually. For example, older terraced properties often have thin party walls and linked basements, so homes owners on a street could come together and look at a solution for everyone. Retrospective applications (submitted once work has already been completed) will be considered.
When completing the form, please include as much information and evidence as possible. You will be asked if you have had a survey or a quote done – if you have, you will need to attach these documents. You will also have the option to attach photos showing flood damage to your property. Please note that the first address you are asked for needs to be the flooded property address.
You can now apply for funding under this scheme using the link below:
If you require assistance filling in this form, please ask for support at a Flood Recovery Centre or Hub (see section below Recovery Hubs and Support).
For any other questions you may have please see the following:
A useful brochure from the Environment Agency is available to read: Property Flood Resilience. It is full of detailed information and includes examples of homes which have been adapted to be more resilient to any future flooding.
Doncaster Council will not tolerate fraud, bribery or corruption please refer to our Anti-Fraud, Bribery and Corruption Framework
Contacting your insurance company should be your priority. If you have home and contents insurance, make sure you contact your provider before you do anything else. They might need to come and assess the damage for evidence.
Before you start cleaning, take photographs to document damage and record the flood water height. Ask your insurer before removing items that cannot be cleaned, like mattresses and carpets.
Use permanent marker to draw a line on the wall of every room affected by flooding, showing how high the water reached (the builders will need to know this to plan the repairs needed).
Things to ask your insurer:
- Who are they going to send and what will they do?
- Is there anything you need to arrange yourself?
- What is the extent of your policy cover? Are there any gaps?
- When will they visit? If flooding is still affecting the area they may not be able to get access immediately.
- Is there anything that you can do yourself before they arrive?
- Will they provide temporary accommodation – such as a bed and breakfast, a static caravan or a rented house? Reasonable costs are usually covered by your policy.
- When they are making repairs, will they make your home more resilient to future flooding, such as fitting non-return valves to all drains and water inlet pipes?
If you haven't got insurance or cannot afford the excess please come and see us in one of our recovery hubs for individual advice and support. The National Flood Forum can also offer help and support on 01299 403055.
If you find getting insurance difficult in the future, the Flood Re scheme works with some insurance providers to reduce the cost of insuring certain homes against flooding.
Clean Up Support
Bins and waste
Contact our call centre to request clean-up support on 01302 735688.
Waste collections, such as black bins and blue bins/green boxes, will carry on as normal. For more information please head to www.doncaster.gov.uk/recycling
Repairs and replacing household items
Take advice from specialists before starting repairs to your property. Most of the repair work after flooding will need to be undertaken by professionals appointed by your insurers. If you are not insured or cannot afford the excess please visit one of our recovery hubs who may be able to support you with replacing household items.
Finding a tradesperson (lists and rogue traders advice)
Finding professionals can be made easier by searching www.trustatrader.com - a directory of tradespeople you can trust because their place on the website depends upon their quality of service. This includes, among others:
- Carpenters & Joiners
- Painters & Decorators
- Heating Engineers & Gas Fitters
Unfortunately following an incident of this nature, doorstep criminals have be known to pressure local residents and communities. Feel comfortable in saying "NO" to uninvited salespeople and warn rogue traders / cold callers that they are not welcome.
Take advice from other sources first and don't be pressured into agreeing to work being done. Do not agree for work where the caller says "we are only in the area today'' or for work to start immediately.
For further advice contact the Citizens Advice consumer service helpline on 03454 04 05 06
- Doncaster Council provide a pest control service for domestic, commercial and industrial premises. If you notice any activity in your home or garden, please contact our Pest Control team.
- Any treatments will require a responsible adult (over 18 years old) who is the owner or occupier of the property to be present at the appointment; otherwise treatment will not be carried out.
- There is comprehensive guidance about how to request treatments, how much it will cost and what will happen.
How and what to clean
- Once you have a washing machine up and running, clothes that have come into contact with flood water and have been used for cleaning on a 60°C cycle with detergent. Keep these contaminated clothes on a separate cycle from your other clothing that didn’t touch the flood water.
- You can also wash soft items like bedding and children’s toys on the 60°C cycle with detergent too.
- Clean all hard surfaces like walls and floors with hot water and detergent.
- Disinfect work surfaces, plates, pans, cutlery, chopping boards before using them with food. If you have a working dishwasher, this is a more efficient way to clean and sanitise smaller items. If your wooden chopping boards and wooden spoons have touched the flood water you’ll have to throw these away in your black bin.
- If you think there might be problems with your drainage system, don’t use the washing machine until the water system has been checked.
- Prevent water outdoors from re-entering your home. For example, rainwater from gutters or the roof should drain away from the house and the ground around the house should slope away from the house to keep it dry.
- When given the all-clear from your electric and gas companies, you can use your heating, fans, dehumidifiers and good ventilation to help dry out your home. Keep the thermostat between 20°C to 22°C for steady drying. Don’t use petrol or diesel generators indoors as the exhaust gases contain carbon monoxide, which can kill. Fans should be placed at a window or door to blow the air outwards rather than inwards, so not to spread the moulds.
- If you have air bricks to any under floor spaces, make sure that these are unblocked to give cross ventilation. As floorboards and walls continue to dry out, any loose material and dust need to be vacuumed up on a regular basis.
- You might see mould, this should disappear as your home dries out but if it continues, contact a specialist cleaner.
- If you find dead rodents and pests on your property after the flood, these can be put in your bin in a plastic bag, wearing rubber gloves.
Contaminated Land / Gardens
The situation in Doncaster is such that:
- Good personal hygiene should be maintained as usual when doing any gardening on land that had been flooded – wear gardening gloves and thoroughly wash hands when you have finished before doing anything else.
- The continued rain and sunlight will have a natural cleansing effect on the soil so gardens should have returned to normal by spring when most people return to outdoor activities.
- We are not aware of any specific chemical contamination of areas and any levels of any contamination are likely to be very low and consistent with normal levels found in gardens from routinely used pesticides and herbicides.
- Young children stay away from affected grassed or paved areas until they have been cleaned down and restored to their normal condition.
- The best way of protecting health is always to wash your hands before eating or preparing food
- Where sports fields and pitches have been flooded, gross contamination (litter, rubbish etc. carried in by the flood) should be removed. Wear protective clothing – waterproof boots, plastic apron and gloves – while cleaning up. Cover any open cuts with waterproof plasters. Wash your hands with soap and water after being in contact with floodwater or items that have been contaminated. Following this, the appropriate action to return the pitch to a good playing condition should be carried out according to professional advice.
- Contaminated sandbags – If you have a sandbag that has been touched by flood water / sewage / oil / fuel, this is now classed as contaminated waste. Please put these contaminated sandbags clearly visible on the side of the road and one of our additional refuse vehicles supporting with flood clean-up will collect them. Please note this won’t necessarily be on your normal bin day
- Untouched sandbags – If you were given sandbags as a precautionary measure and they have remained untouched by flood water, you can now choose to either keep hold of the sandbags for future use (they have a 3 month shelf-life) or place them on the side of the road for collection away from any contaminated sandbags.
Recovery Hubs and Support
There are a number of Community Recovery Hubs open across the worst affected areas. Latest venues and opening times can be found below:
Fishlake Recovery Hub
- Location: Fishlake Village Hall, Pinfold Lane, Fishlake, Doncaster, DN7 5JR
- Opening times: Monday to Saturday 10am - 2pm
Bentley Recovery Hub
- Location: The White Cabin, Custom Windows and Doors Yard, Conyers Road, Bentley, DN5 9SU
- Opening times: Monday to Friday 10am -2pm
Scawthorpe Recovery Hub
- Location: Scawthorpe Community Library , Amersall Road, Scawthorpe, Doncaster, DN5 9PQ
- Opening times: every Monday through January and February 2020 3pm-5pm
In addition, all Family Hubs and libraries will be open as normal and able to offer information, advice and guidance around the floods. You can also call Doncaster Council's advice line on 01302 735688.
What do I do if I need temporary accommodation?
If you are a tenant of St Leger Homes, Please contact them on 01302 862 862 or alternatively discuss at one of the dedicated hubs. You can also visit the dedicated web page for frequently asked questions they have received from tenants.
If you're not a tenant of St Leger Homes you will need to contact your insurer as your policy should cover temporary accommodation. If it doesn’t and you can’t stay with family or friends please visit our Home Options service desk at the Doncaster Council Civic building in Doncaster town centre or alternatively discuss at one of the dedicated hubs.
Information for Landlords and Tenants
To reduce the risks of flooding, both landlords and tenants should:
- Check their flood risk even if they have already done so previously, as the Environment Agency regularly updates its flood zone maps.
- Be mindful of the risk of surface water and flash flooding, even if the property is located away from a river and outside the identified flood zones. Flash flooding is becoming increasingly common as climate change takes effect.
- Sign up for free flood warnings, which will alert landlords when river flooding is possible/occurring and give tenants vital time to prepare when an alert is issued. Also check Met Office weather warnings, river level data, and information from the local community/flood group.
Landlords are advised to:
- Inform tenants of their flood risk and encourage them to plan ahead for possible flooding. Preparation is a vital step in reducing damage to the property and their possessions.
- Get a surveyor to help find the most effective property-level flood protection solutions. The Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has a list of professional chartered surveyors that can be browsed by postcode.
- Take steps to reduce the damage caused by floodwater entering the property. Positioning electrical and plumbing services at high levels and using building materials that will not be affected by water will reduce the costs and time taken to repair the property after flooding.
- Consider installing measures to help prevent floodwater from entering the property, such as flood gates, air bricks and non-return valves. They should also show tenants how to deploy these if required.
- Check, test and maintain flood protection products in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If repairs or adjustments are needed and the landlord is uncertain on how to do them, they should contact the installer who fitted them.
Tenants are advised to:
- Keep an up-to-date flood plan. This can remind them to store sentimental items and important documents upstairs, and move valuable items to safety, switch off gas, electric and water, and roll up carpets, line doors and raise furniture where safe to do so in the event of a flood. A template can be found at www.gov.uk/prepare-for-flooding/future-flooding.
- Keep a flood pack containing essential items such as a list of useful contacts, clean water and prescription medication, to keep them safe in an emergency.
What to do if flooding occurs:
- Unless this is caused by the tenant, landlords are legally responsible for repairs to the structure of the building and must get water, gas, electricity, sanitation and heating back up and running as soon as possible.
- Although landlords are not required to find accommodation for displaced tenants, they may have to assist with any costs that arise if the property is so badly damaged that the tenant needs to relocate whilst repairs are made.
- When flooding occurs, tenants are advised to tell the landlord as soon as possible and document the flooding where safe to do so in order in case they need to put in a claim later on. This may include taking photos and saving receipts from hotels they have to stay in if the property is too badly damaged to inhabit.
- Tenants are responsible for their personal possessions and should take simple measures to limit damage to the property in the event of flooding where this is possible and does not pose a danger to life. Such measures might include lining the doors of the affected room with towels or rags and using buckets to collect water.
- Advice for tenants who need to move out temporarily can be found on the Citizens Advice website.
Moving Back Home
Contacting your insurance company should be your priority, please see the insurance section above.
It's important to stay safe, make sure you follow advice from the emergency services, and do not return home until it's safe to do so.
You can read information from the Environment agency about what to do before, during and after a flood here.
Do not turn on electrical or gas appliances. It’s only safe to do so when they’ve been checked by a qualified technician.
If you smell gas or suspect a leak, do not switch on any switches in the property (lights, sockets) as any damaged wiring can cause a spark and also do not light any sort of flame or heat source. Turn off the main gas valve, open all windows, and leave your house immediately. Notify Gas Emergencies on 0800 111999 24 hour line and do not return until you are told it is safe.
Always get a qualified professional to check that your electrical appliance is safe to use. If there is major flood damage to the electrics caused by clean or contaminated water, then it is likely that parts of the electrical installation will need to be rewired.
You should not unplug any electrical items while they’re in floodwater as the electric cords or even outlets are submerged, you could have a very dangerous situation on your hands. The electricity can charge the standing water, and you could be electrocuted.
St Leger Tenants
If you are a St Leger Homes tenant and have any questions, please visit the St Leger Homes Flood advice page.
General advice for storage of medicines during and following a flood:
- Some medicines need to be stored in a refrigerator to work effectively. In a situation where you do not have access to power or a refrigerator following a flood, you should place your medicines in a clean, insulted bag and leave outside the window.
- Before doing this, check the temperature is not less than -2 degrees or above 8 degrees. Use a thermometer to check and monitor the temperature range.
- If you do not have power or access to a refrigerator and temperatures are warm, store your medicines in a clean, airtight container and immerse in cold water, in a dark, breezy location. Use a thermometer to check the temperature range does not rise above 8 degrees. If you have an ice wrap, put this around the container rather than cold water.
- Some medication has to be stored in a dry environment, which means they can be at risk of deteriorating if left in a damp property or area. Where this is the case, store them in an airtight container. If you have access to silica gels, include these in the container as they can absorb moisture.
- If your neighbours have power or their property is dry, you may wish to approach them to temporarily store medicines on your behalf.
- If you still have concerns about safe and effective storage of your medication, contact your local pharmacy.
Having a flooded home is very stressful. If you need emotional support or you are worried about your own or someone else’s mental health, contact family and friends, your doctor or an organisation like the Red Cross or the Samaritans . Also, take a look at the Public Health England guide to mental wellbeing after a flood. Advice will also be available in the hubs and on the Your Life Doncaster Website
To ensure you stay healthy and reduce the risk of infection, regular hand washing is vital.
Health support and advice
If you have any health concerns or you need to access health and care services, there are many available in Doncaster. Contact your local practice if you need an appointment with a nurse or GP and they will be able to help.
Local pharmacies continue to be open as normal – they can help with minor conditions and ailments.
If you need help out of hours, please visit Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group’s website. There’s a range of health and care services such as GP out of hours service and the Doncaster Same Day Health Centre.
Food and Water
Yorkshire Water would like to reassure customers that there is no cause for concern with the quality of drinking water. You can use the water from your taps as normal. If you notice a change in the colour, taste or smell of your tap water, contact them directly on 0345 124 2424.
Don’t eat food that’s touched floodwater. If your electricity is off, don’t eat fresh food from a fridge after four hours or from a freezer after 24 hours.
Return to the Flood advice homepage