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Floods: Hull

Volume 488: debated on Friday 27 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the effect of secondary flooding on the time taken for people to be able to return to their homes in Hull. (257032)

There have been 910 incidences of ‘secondary flooding’ in Hull since January 2008, although the relationship between the flooding in summer 2007 and subsequent water ingress remains to be explored further. The city council is working with the Environment Agency and the university of Hull to understand the factors which contribute to the continuing incidences of water ingress into homes. As of 29 January 2009, of the 472 households displaced from their homes in Hull by flooding, 360 were displaced as a result of water ingress from January 2008 or subsequently.

The Government are concerned about all households which are still displaced from their homes following the 2007 summer flooding. Approximately 100 households returned each week between the end of June and the middle of November and on that basis we estimate that more than 19 out of every 20 households originally displaced are back home. That compares well to the Carlisle floods in 2005 when one in 10 were still out of their homes after 18 months.

But we recognise that is no consolation to those still displaced and the Minister for Local Government, my right hon. Friend the Member for Wentworth (John Healey) is continuing to work with local authorities and the insurance industry to ensure that the momentum in getting people home is maintained.

Those families still living wholly or partially in caravans are a particular concern and the Minister for Local Government has linked up with council leaders in the most affected authorities, which include Hull, to offer additional support to help to those households over the winter.