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Sandbag policy

For flood related advice and weather warnings see our flood recovery information.

In the event of River (or Watercourse) Flood Containment and Prevention

Our policy for sandbagging is to assist with the prevention of damage to property by flooding. This may be achieved by the filtering, containment or diversion of floodwaters from rivers or watercourses.

The sole responsibility for protection of private property in the event of a flood lies with individual owners and not the District Council or any other Agency.

What we may do:

  • Provide sand and sandbags to properties (normally a maximum of 8 sandbags per property) located in formal flood warning zones during a declared Flood Warning period in Appleby and Eamont Bridge.

  • Deliver sand bags to vulnerable customers where individual properties are at imminent risk of flooding, subject to available resources and other priorities during a flooding event.

  • Where considered appropriate, make sandbags available for collection by customers from the Contractor (Amey Ltd) depot at Old London Road, Penrith. This is only with our prior approval. Telephone 01768 817817.

  • Provide strategic sandbag stores at places vulnerable to flooding that in the opinion of the Director of Governance can assist in reducing the demand on resources during a flooding incident. All sandbag stores are subject to on-going review of usage.

  • Assist properties outside of the district when requested to do so by a neighbouring Authority or resulting from a request following the implementation of the County Emergency Plan, subject to available resources.

What we will not do

  • Provide sandbags to non-residential properties not in formal flood zones.

  • Clear blocked culverts bridges and watercourses during a flood event, or afterwards on land that is not in the Council's ownership.

  • Accept responsibility for placement of sandbags, except at locations where infirmity or disability is an issue.

  • Accept responsibility for the disposal of sandbags other than in the formal flood warning zones

  • Provide sandbags to protect gardens, outbuildings or other structures

  • Provide sandbags where there is deemed to be no imminent risk of flooding.

As a contingency against potential flooding risks:

Householders and Commercial property owners in flood risk areas are encouraged to make their own provision for flood defence and not rely upon the Council to defend their property.

Sandbags will not totally prevent floodwater encroaching into property and householders should remove articles to a safe location above the anticipated flood level. People building flood defences with sandbags should also be aware of the building methods to employ in order to make an effective seal and the health and safety implication of manual handling sandbags as they are exceptionally heavy.

Specialist products are available commercially to help prevent flooding of domestic properties. Specialist surveying services are also available to assess individual properties and advise on appropriate flood protection measures. If you require advice on these products or services we will try to assist you.

The Environment Agency website has further information on preparing for a flood.