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Flood Risk Assessment Reports & Templates

Identify flood risks and capture photos for detailed flood assessment reports using a powerful flood assessment app.

Published 13 Sep 2021

What is a Flood Risk Assessment?

A Flood Risk Assessment (FRA) is a systematic process which aims to identify the sources and level of flood risks of a property or site. The UK Environment Agency requires property investors and developers to complete an FRA prior to development within key flood zones.

 

This article covers the following:

When to Do a Flood Risk Assessment?

An FRA should be done for all UK property developments within a medium to high probability flood zone. Each flood zone represents the likelihood of river and sea flooding without the presence of flood defences such as levees, reservoirs, and seawalls, among others. Use the UK Environment Agency’s Flood Map for Planning tool to find out which flood zone your development is in.

What is a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA)?

Part of the requirement for doing an FRA is conducting an appropriate Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) by local planning authorities. An SFRA is included in decisions concerning the design and location of any existing and future development in order to mitigate the causes and effects of flooding as well as identify lands that may be needed for flood risk management features and structures.

How Do You Prepare a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment?

Local planning authorities prepare for an SFRA by knowing when to review and update existing SFRA, working with other local planning authorities, and by consulting experts from certain organizations who can help complete an SFRA.

How Long Does a Flood Risk Assessment Take?

Flood risk assessments can take anywhere between 20 to 25 days total turnaround time and will always depend on the current workload of the Environmental Agency.

What are Flood Hazards?

Flood hazards are hazards associated with flooding. It is divided into: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary hazards are those that are caused by direct contact with flood waters. Secondary hazards are those caused by the flooding. While, tertiary hazards are the long term changes that occur due to the flooding.

Below is a table showing flood hazards grouped by their effects:

Primary

Secondary

Tertiary

Transport of large particles or objects such as automobiles, houses, and bridges caused by high water velocities

Disruption of services (e.g., gas and electrical service, water, and transportation systems)

Change in location of river channels due to flooding. New channels may develop, leaving old channels to dry out

Massive amounts of erosion caused by flood waters

Health hazards such as famine and diseases

Farm lands destroyed caused by deposited sediments carried by flood waters 

Water damage on human built structures

 

Job loss due to disruption of services, destruction of business

Flood waters carrying more sediment as suspended load resulting to the deposit of sediment to flooded area once flood waters retreat  

 

Increase of insurance rates

Crop loss, and carried away or drowning of livestock, pets, and other animals

 

Corruption resulting from misuse of relief funds

Humans carried away or drowned by the flood water

 

Destruction of wildlife habitat

Concentration of garbage, debris, and toxic pollutants through flood waters 

   

Stages of Flood Risk Assessment

Completing a flood risk assessment involves a systematic process before proceeding with any major decision. Here are the three essential stages in conducting a comprehensive flood risk assessment:

Flood Risk Assessment

Flood Risk Assessment

Stage 1: Flood Mapping and Planning

Once you have identified that you are within a medium to high probability flood zone you will begin with the planning and preliminary assessment stage. This stage includes detailed mapping of the proposed development site with a focus on areas at risk of flooding. It also involves a review of floods that have taken place and floods that could take place in future.

Stage 2: Identifying Sources of Flood Risks

The most essential part of completing an FRA is to determine the vulnerability of the site or property from any flood occurrences. Flood risks can be both natural or artificial.

Here are 8 major sources of flood risks to look out for during flood assessments:

  1. Fluvial – also known as river flooding, this occurs when a nearby river or stream was not able to take on water causing an overflow above its banks down to the mainland.
  2. Coastal – this occurs due to bad weather conditions such as high tides, storms and surges which rises sea water levels.
  3. Canals – flooding occurs when canals are impounded above surrounding ground levels and when retaining structure fails.
  4. Groundwater – this occurs when the water table rises above ground elevations and usually after a long period of continuous rains.
  5. Reservoirs and Water bodies – large water bodies or reservoirs are used to retain water in times of flood. However reservoirs and water bodies could overtop which can lead to rapid outpouring of water to floodplains.
  6. Pluvial Runoff – a gradual flooding of low-lying areas after prolonged and intense rains. This happens when soil infiltration and drainage infrastructure capacities are overwhelmed and inadequate.
  7. Sewers – sewer flooding are due to excessive flows or blockage in the infrastructure such as manholes and gullies, which can also generate overland flows.
  8. Effect of Development on Wider Catchment – catchments or watersheds are areas of land where a river or lake collects water from rain. Development with catchments can increase flows into sewer networks.

Stage 3: Flood Risk Mitigation

The final stage of an FRA is to set out mitigation measures to address and reduce flooding risks within acceptable levels. This includes installation of flood defenses to control potential negative effects of flood waters, managing residual risks, and improving water systems and infrastructure.

What is a Flood Report?

A flood report, or a flood risk assessment report, is a comprehensive document that details a proposed development site’s risk of flooding. Flood risk assessment reports are used by local planning authorities, property investors, and developers to understand the potential of a flood with a particular intensity will occur over an extended period of time. A flood risk assessment report can reveal how flood risks can be controlled, proper urban planning can be employed, and quality of life can be improved.

How to Assess Flood Risks with iAuditor

Whether fluvial or rivers, pluvial or surface water, tidal or sea, groundwater, or any other main source(s) of flood risk to the site, iAuditor by SafetyCulture can help you assess flood risks more efficiently. iAuditor is an easy-to-use risk assessment tool you can use to take photo evidence of flood risks, record detailed notes, and generate comprehensive reports on the spot.

While you’re still onsite, flood risk assessment reports can be instantly shared with key stakeholders and be able to see which sites are more prone to flooding using iAuditor analytics. To help you get started, we have created a flood risk assessment template and a flood risk assessment checklist you can download and customize for free.

SafetyCulture staff writer

Carlo Sheen Escano

Carlo Sheen Escano is a contributing writer for SafetyCulture based in Makati City, Philippines. Sheen has experience in digital marketing and has been writing for SafetyCulture since 2018. His articles mainly discuss risks in the workplace and well-known safety and quality processes used to mitigate them. Furthermore, Sheen is passionate about providing insights to global customers on how technology can help them to do the best work of their lives.

Carlo Sheen Escano is a contributing writer for SafetyCulture based in Makati City, Philippines. Sheen has experience in digital marketing and has been writing for SafetyCulture since 2018. His articles mainly discuss risks in the workplace and well-known safety and quality processes used to mitigate them. Furthermore, Sheen is passionate about providing insights to global customers on how technology can help them to do the best work of their lives.