London businesses are highly inclined to experience flash floods in more areas over the coming weeks, according to new research from Zurich UK.
The research found that retail and mixed-use buildings in Kensington and Chelsea have the highest risk percentage at 63% in the London borough. That’s an alarming two-fifths of the capital’s businesses at risk of existing hit by flash floods.
Other districts at high risk encompass Hammersmith and Fulham at 56%, Merton at 54%, Southwark at 54%, and Wandsworth at 53%.
Zurich said the anticipated flash floods have the potential to reach 42% of 301,000 commercial buildings and swamp 33,200 commercial basements in London.
Paul Redington, regional major loss property claims manager at Zurich UK, said London business owners would need to be ready for the long-term since there seems to be no end in sight to this rainstorm any time soon.
“Flooding now poses a serious threat to the capital’s homes and industries, especially after the severe heatwave we have experienced in recent weeks,” Redington said. “More frequent and severe rainstorms could be the new normal in coming years.”
Zurich noted five ways in which owners to protect their businesses from flash flooding during this thunderstorm season:
- Check your flood risk – assess the flood risk in your area and sign up for flood warnings.
- Protect your property – shift expensive equipment to higher floors, back up data, move plug sockets higher up, and invest in non-return valves to stop sewers backing up.
- Prepare a flood plan – have crucial information at hand, such as key locations for electricity cut-off, and a list of actions if a flood is imminent, such as moving stock or computer servers.
- Write a business continuity plan – factor in climate shocks such as floods into your business continuity plan.
- Carry out a climate risk assessment – work with experts to identify how current and future climate change could impact the operations of your business.