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Home owners and businesses urged to be on flood alert

Find out where your gas, water and electricity mains are to make sure you can turn them off quickly, also keep important personal documents in sealed plastic bags and safe from areas floodwater can reach. These are some of the steps that should be followed if the worst happens.

Kieran Murphy, Managing Director, Barclays Insurance, said: "We have already seen some areas being hit by heavy rain and flooding, and it’s vital that people are prepared for an increase in severe weather incidents over the next few weeks.

"It is crucial that people check whether they live in a flood prone area and take all the necessary steps to be prepared should they be affected. While you cannot prevent floods from occurring, you can make sure you are covered for the damage caused to building and contents through your home insurance policy."

What to do before the likelihood of flooding or a storm

* Move furniture, electrical equipment and valuables (including photographs and sentimental items) to upper floors;
* If you are in an area prone to floods, prepare by placing sandbags around the perimeter of your property;
* Park your car in a garage, or away from large trees;
* Secure or lock away loose objects such as garden furniture and ornaments, bikes, children’s toys and ladders;
* Fasten all doors and windows;
* Check for loose tiles on the roof;
* Secure any weak fences and posts to minimise the risk of causing damage to other parts of your property;
* Check that aerials or satellite dishes are securely fixed.

Most common types of flood or storm claims

* Roof tiles blown off, often in conjunction with damage to gutters, fascias, etc;
* Damaged TV/radio aerials;
* Breakage of glass – most often greenhouse glass;
* Lifting of roofing felt, particularly on sheds;
* Damage to chimneys;;
* Trees falling down and damaging buildings;
* Boundary walls blown down;
* Water damage to house and contents.

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