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Researchers call for flood protection data


CONSTRUCTION products manufacturers have been asked to join the fight against flooding linked to global warming.

Industry research body Ciria has linked up with academics at the Leeds Metropolitan University and flooding specialists HR Wallingford to put together a study of building materials that are resistant to the effects of flooding.The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Environment Agency are both funding the exercise.

The team has asked manufacturers to submit their own data about both products and building systems that offer better protection during flooding or are easier to clear up in the aftermath.

Until now research in the UK in this area has tended to look at how existing properties can be protected by retrofitting of flood protection measures such as flood skirts and floodgates.But that is to change with this study according to Dr Jez Wingfield, of Leeds Metropolitan University:

'What we are doing is going back to basics.

If we are going to build on floodplains, what are the materials and systems that are going to be most suitable?

'We are looking for real experimental or case study data that shows how materials actual function during and after flooding.We suspect very little work has been done in this field.'

Dr Wingfield said that, given the ODPMs plans for massive developments in the Thames Gateway floodplain and the increasing reluctance of insurers to provide cover for at risk properties, the research was vital.

The outcome of the research is expected to be a series of recommendations that will inform future developments in the building regulations including Parts C, G and H.