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What to do during a flood

During a flooding incident there are a number of things you can do as a homeowner and support you can ask for from certain organisations. 

Who can help you

Different organisations have different responsibilities for helping people affected during flooding. Firstly you should always report a flood via the information on this page but you may also need to contact another service for support. Below is a list of which agency you should contact for different types of assistance.


What they are responsible for and support provided

Contact details

Oxfordshire County Council 

Any flooding affecting roads or paths including flood prevention on highways

0345 310 1111

Thames Water

The local sewer system and any flooding that may affect them. Let them know if you have any issues with sewer water

0800 316 9800

Environment Agency

Any flooding issues affecting rivers or major water courses. They are responsible for managing the flooding and flood prevention in those water courses

0345 988 1188

Thames Valley Police and Oxfordshire Fire Service

Supporting with closing roads and helping in the immediate response to a flood but have no statutory responsibilities for flooding 

999 if there is an immediate risk to life (101 for non-emergencies)

Local parish council

Your local parish council may provide flood support. Check with them for more information.


West Oxfordshire District Council

If you are asked to evacuate your home, contact your insurance provider or landlord (if renting) first as they may be able to provide you with temporary accommodation.  If you are uninsured or your landlord isn’t able to help, contact your friends and family to see whether they can help. If you are unable to find alternative accommodation you can contact West Oxfordshire District Council for assistance.

01993 861000

Local landowners

It is the responsibility of land owners to maintain water courses on private land 



Putting up sandbags

When there is an imminent risk of flooding to property, supported by an Environment Agency Flood Alert or Flood Warning being declared, sandbags are made available free of charge by West Oxfordshire District Council. We will deliver sandbags to the elderly or disabled at times of need.

In an emergency loose sand and bags are available for householders to make up themselves at the following neighbourhood sandbag centres listed below. Please be aware you will need a vehicle to transport them and may need several trips to collect enough.

If your home is flooding

If you are in immediate danger call 999

You can listen to local radio for updates or call the Flood line on 0345 988 1188.

If water is entering your home:

  • make sure you have access to clean water
  • move essential items upstairs or out of reach of the water
  • turn off gas, electricity and water supplies when flood water is about to enter your home if safe to do so. Do not touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water

Travel during flooding

Do not walk through flooded areas, there may be hidden dangers such as open drains, damaged road surfaces, submerged debris or deep channels.

Do not try to drive through flooded roads or fords, the water is often deeper than it looks and your vehicle may be swept away or you may become stranded.

For the latest travel and transport information visit: