When flooding is imminent you often have only minutes to save your home and business from terrible floodwater damage.
Insurance claims from flooding are way higher than burglaries with the average claim in the UK now about £32,000. Flooding is known as “the thief who takes everything.”
It wrecks the very fabric of your home – walls will need replastering and floors relaying – as well as destroying your possessions. Any electrical items such as TVs, dishwashers and tumble dryers will need to be thrown away if they are damaged by floodwater.
So it’s absolutely essential to keep the floodwater out in the first place and the Environment Agency is clear that people are responsible for their own flood protection and that specialist flood mitigation products are better than traditional sandbags.
The Environment Agency states: “Don’t assume the authorities will provide you with sandbags in a flood emergency. It is the responsibility of property owners to take appropriate action to protect their property from flooding. Sandbags are relatively ineffective when compared to purpose-built flood protection products. We strongly encourage people to use these products.”
Many people don’t realise that local councils have absolutely no responsibility to provide sandbags and it’s down to people to protect their own properties.
Some councils now realise that FloodSax are so versatile - space-saving to store and quick and easy to deploy - that they recommend them.
Gosport Borough Council in Hampshire urges its residents to use FloodSax, saying it has evaluated the bags. The council adds: “FloodSax have many advantages over traditional sandbags, being easy to store and move, easy to use and, importantly, easy on the environment, having a significantly lower carbon footprint.”
Derbyshire County Council adds: “The county council have a limited supply of FloodSax and these can be provided to members of the public considered to be at risk of flooding for demonstration purposes only. Therefore, the county council recommends residents source their own additional FloodSax should they find that the product works for them.”
FloodSax are used by local councils, facilities managers, utility companies, British Waterways, flood protection groups and countless home and business owners both in the UK and worldwide.
FloodSax are so much easier to use than sandbags they have been officially endorsed by the National Disabled Fire Association that supports disabled people working in the fire service and the wider communities in which they serve.
How FloodSax work and how to build FloodSax into flood-resistant barriers
To prevent floods, build FloodSax into barriers to protect doors – be that your front door, patio door, garage door or warehouse door.
FloodSax are vacuum-packed in packs of five in easy to carry bags and four packs fit into one cardboard box weighing just 21lbs (9.5kilos)– that’s the equivalent to 20 traditional sandbags and imagine trying to lift and shift them to both store and then putting them in place when a flood is about to happen.
To deploy FloodSax as alternative sandbags when a flood is forecast or is actually happening, simply immerse the FloodSax in 20 litres of water in a large bucket or tub. You could even use a hosepipe or, if time is really critical, use the floodwater itself.
The FloodSax will then expand in around seven minutes to weigh 20kg (44lbs). A special gelling polymer inside simply absorbs the water and then keeps it in the FloodSax so it can be used for however long the emergency lasts, which could be several months.
Each row of FloodSax will keep out approximately 6 inches of water and usually two or three rows are enough to keep floodwater out. Don’t build them more than one metre (3.2ft) high. Just lay the FloodSax next to one another and then the row on top across the joins below to make it a firm barrier. FloodSax are so heavy and tough, water blasted at them through a firefighting hose won’t shift them.
During torrential rain in West Yorkshire, a row of FloodSax two high kept a deluge of floodwater out of a company’s warehouse. The business had previously been flooded in the warehouse which had led to a £250,000 insurance claim and when the FloodSax kept the floodwater at bay there was high technology electrical equipment valued at £360,000 in the warehouse. The FloodSax stopped any water from getting in and damaging the equipment.
FloodSax factfile including sizes and weights
Each FloodSax is made up of 4 layers with 12 internal absorbent sections creating a multi-chamber system to keep the water fully absorbed. These absorbent chambers are then sewn together into an outer sleeve of a nonwoven material.
Each FloodSax weighs just under 1lb (.39 kilos) before it comes into contact with water and is 52cms by 53cms by 1.5cms in size. After it has absorbed the water it will be about 20cms deep and the same length and width.
A box of 20 FloodSax weighs just 21lbs (9.5kilos) and is 55cms by 54cms by 15cms so can easily be carried by one person.
Disposing of FloodSax
FloodSax alternative sandbags should be disposed of once they have been used to stop flooding … and the same goes for traditional sandbags.
This is because floodwater is always contaminated and this could range from sewage and chemicals to fuel and oil.
Most of this inner material within a FloodSax - the gelling polymer and wood pulp - is biodegradable so if you want to shrink the FloodSax after use cut across it diagonally from corner to corner with a knife and then pour table salt on the white inners which will break down the polymer.
This reduces the size of the FloodSax which can then be thrown into the general waste to go to landfill where most of it will biodegrade over time. If short of time, the FloodSax can be thrown away without cutting it across and adding the salt.
Always wear gloves to reduce the risk of contamination.
If FloodSax are used on an industrial scale they could be taken to a specialist disposal company which would use industrial equipment to squeeze the water out of the FloodSax.
* If you have used FloodSax to protect your home or business then please let us know what you used them for and how well they worked for you. Email email@example.com