Disaster Restoration (DR) sent an unprecedented number of technicians and equipment to flood-hit areas last week.

DR provided an emergency response service on behalf of insurance companies to more than half of the 400 properties estimated to have been affected in Lewes, West Sussex.

DR technical director Bill Lakin said: “While previous flood emergencies have seen cowboy builders exploiting the situation, this time insurance companies are better organised and have strategies and planning in place.”

DR's activities are also in the spotlight of a local TV crew, which is filming DR's restoration of a street of five houses.

“The TV company is monitoring the entire procedure, from the moment the company's technicians go in to launch their emergency damage limitation programme, right through to the sanitising and initiation of drying out processes,” Lakin said.

DR's job is made more difficult as whole streets of houses are badly contaminated by toxins such as untreated sewage which came in with the flood water.