Environment Agency to publish maps showing areas at risk of surface-water next month

New flood maps to be published by the Environment Agency next month could help underwriters assess with more accuracy properties at risk of flooding, according to The Times.

The new data was at the heart of the discussion in a full-day event that Ordnance Survey ran in conjunction with Insurance Times on Wednesday in London.

From 3 December, the maps on the agency’s website will show areas at risk of surface-water flooding.

Where there is a risk, it will be shown as high, medium or low, equating to chances of flooding of one in 30, one in 100 and one in 1000, The Times reports.

Anyone will be able to check the surface-water flood risk for an area by typing in its postcode.

Presently, it is possible to search only for flood risk posed by rivers and the sea.

A number of insurance companies are already using their own mapping tools to calculate premiums, but others could use the agency’s.

The agency’s head of flood incident management Craig Woolhouse said looking at the evidence from river and coastal flood maps, shows that some people are having difficulty securing insurance at affordable rates.

The not-for-profit ‘insurer of last resort’ Flood Re scheme, which the industry and the government are working on together is aimed at helping to keep insurance affordable for properties at risk of flooding, by charging every household an additional £10.50 on their premium to generate a fund that can cover a one-in-200-years flood event.