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Stilt Houses The Future Of UK Flood Defence?
Flooding is often in the news here in the UK at this time of year and it’s often the same places each time and the same people affected year in, year out… so it’s vital that the government and big industry players do all they can to offer those in flood-prone areas all the protection they can.
And now it seems that there’s a potential new answer on the horizon thanks to Larkfleet Homes, a property development company that’s working on creating new houses built on stilts that can rise up from the ground if a flood does take place.
According to the Daily Mail, the three-bed prototype house can raise up five feet off the ground to protect it from flood damage, with a steel frame powered by eight mechanical jacks, a central motor, drive shafts and gear box. It will weigh around 65 tonnes and is to be built in Lincolnshire next year – potentially rolled out around the UK if it proves to be successful.
In the event of a flood, the house occupants would have to vacate the property before it could be raised up. And it’s to be equipped with solar panels on the roof and a battery so it can still be connected to electricity. Water and sewage will be connected by hoses.
CEO of the company Karl Hick was quoted by the news source as saying: “We have planning permission to build an experimental house that could rise on jacks above flood waters, effectively eliminating the risk of flood damage.
“If tests are successful the house could provide a model that would enable house building on thousands of sites across the UK which at present cannot be developed because of the risk of flooding.”
A new report from the Sunday Times has revealed that meteorologists are expecting the UK to be battered by up to 11 more storms this year, so measures like this house on stilts could prove invaluable in the future.
AccuWeather forecast that the number of storms in 2017 would be a record, doubling what was seen last year. Gusts of wind up to 120mph an hour could be seen, with these storms predicted to cause flooding and travel chaos before the winter is over.
If you’re concerned about flooding in your local area, keep an eye on the Environmental Agency website as you can find out if you’re at risk by checking river and sea levels, and current flood warnings.
You can also check to see what your five-day flood risk is in your area – between October 23rd and October 27th, the forecast is very low. If the forecast was on red, high risk, this would mean that there is significant risk to life and you would have to take action, being prepared to act on advice from the emergency services.
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