- You should have a Home Emergency Kit in case you have no choice but to stay indoors. This may be because of severe weather, or emergency services advice.
- You should have a Grab Bag in case you need to leave your home quickly because of an emergency.
- Many of the items in your Home Emergency Kit and Grab Bag will be the same. Take a look at our checklist to find out more.
- Does your car have a Car Emergency Kit? Read more here. See section below.
- Don’t forget to think about your pets!
- You should have a Car Emergency Kit in case you are stuck in your vehicle for an extended period of time. This may be because of severe weather, traffic or other emergency.
- Take a look at our checklist and watch our video to find out more.
- Does your home have a Home Emergency Kit? See section above.
- You should have an evacuation plan that you and everyone else in your household knows about.
- You should agree on a meeting place outside your home in case you don’t all evacuate from the same starting point (for example if someone is out shopping at the time). Think of a place both within and outside of your immediate neighbourhood.
- If you have a car, keep a half tank of fuel in it at all times in case you need to evacuate. Make sure you lock the door behind you!
- Take a look at our leaflet for more advice.
- During an emergency, you may be asked to Go In, Stay In, Tune In until you get the all clear. This is what that means:
- GO IN – Go indoors. Do not collect your children from school or day-care. They will be cared for there and it is safer for both of you.
- STAY IN – Stay indoors. Make sure all windows are closed and there are no draughts or open vents. Follow advice from emergency services with regards to turning off your utilities. Stay calm and rest.
- TUNE IN – Tune in to local radio stations or news channels for advice on what to do now. Keep phone lines clear.
- ALL CLEAR – Official messages will be given when it is safe to leave your home again. These messages will be issued by Emergency Services, Company Representatives or local radio.
- An ICE number in your phone allows emergency responders such as paramedics to contact your emergency contact / ICE partner if anything should happen to you.
- There are many ways for the emergency services to access your ICE number. These include in your phone book, on your lock screen, on your wallpaper or a sticker on the back of your phone! There are also now apps to download that hold your ICE information.
- See our ICE guide and watch our video for more details.
- The Met Office warns both the public and emergency services about severe or hazardous weather.
- When the weather has the potential to cause damage, widespread disruption and/or danger to life the National Severe Weather Warning Service will issue an alert. This includes warnings about rain, snow, wind fog and ice.
- These warnings are given a colour depending on a combination of both the likelihood of the event happening and the impact the conditions may have.
- See the latest Met Office Severe Weather Warnings here.
- Learn more about weather-related impacts here.
- You can read the Met Office guide to Weather Warnings here.
Cyber crime can be separated into two categories:
- Cyber dependent crimes, where a digital system is the target as well as the means of attack. These include attacks on computer systems to disrupt IT infrastructure, and stealing data over a network using malware. The purpose of the data theft is usually to commit further crime.
- Cyber enabled crimes, ‘existing’ crimes that have been transformed in scale or form by their use of the internet. The growth of the internet has allowed these crimes to be carried out on an industrial scale
Follow our tips below to help protect yourself from becoming a victim of cyber crime:
- Create a strong password and change it often, make sure that it contains lower and upper case letters as well as special characters and numbers
- Use different passwords for different accounts and never share them with anyone
- Consider using two-step verification where possible
- Use a trusted anti-virus and update it regularly
- Don’t share personal information online
- Never click on suspicious links even if they are sent to you by someone you trust, as their account could have been hacked
- Your bank will never ask for your login details, they also won’t ask you to transfer any funds for security purposes
- The police will never ask you to hand over any money or transfer funds from your bank account
- Consider getting a Virtual Private Network especially when being connected to a public WiFi
- Speak to your children about staying safe online, make sure that they know not to share your home address or school they go to
- Always remember that anyone can become a victim of cyber crime and it is important to always stay vigilant
Find out more in the Little Book of Big Scams.
If there is supply disruption to any of your utilities (electricity, gas and or water) there are various simple things to consider:
- Create a home emergency kit/grab bag
- Know your supplier and how to contact them
- Create a Home Emergency Plan in case you need to leave your home
- During an incident follow advice from your provider(s) and from local services including the emergency services and local authorities
- Make sure you have either a battery or windup torch to hand
- Know how to turn off your utilities and what is involved in turning them back on
- Look after in on elderly and vulnerable neighbours during an incident
- In a gas outage do not overload the electricity grid by using too many electricity heaters
Key contacts and reporting links:
In a power cut:
- Telephone UK Power Networks on 105 from a Landline or 0333 32 32 105 from a mobile or
- Text the word ‘Power’ followed by your postcode to 80876, e.g. Power MK40 1xx
- For all gas incidents, telephone the National Grid Emergency Call Centre on 0800 111999
Anglian Water –
- Check to see whether there is a leak online
- Report a leak by telephoning the free 24/7 leak-line number 0800 771 881
- If you do not have any water telephone the 24/7 emergency hotline on 03457 145 145
Affinity Water –
- Check current customer alerts online
- Report bursts or leaks by telephoning 0800 376 5325
- Check current incidents and planned works online
- If you do not have any water check to see if water is coming out of any taps to see if its a plumbing problem, check with your neighbours and if they have the same problem, call 0345 357 2407
Thames Water –
You may be entitled to a priority service during a utilities failure for example bottled water delivered to the elderly and / or disabled. Each service is different but all are OPT IN services and you have to register for them.
If you would like to find out whether you are eligible for any of these services, please contact your utility companies via the contact details on their bills.
Great advice on our partners websites:
- For PowerCuts – see UK Power Networks
- Know how to turn off your gas and what is required to turn it on – see UK Power Networks
- Visit the National Grid website for additional advice
Learn how and when to turn off utilities:
You may need to do this in case you have to evacuate. This can happen even in less extreme circumstances, like a burst pipe or gas leak, so its useful to know what to do.
- Locate the electric, gas and water shut-off valves (stop cocks).
- Keep necessary tools near gas and water shut-off valves.
- Teach family members how to turn off utilities.
- If you turn the gas off, a professional must turn it back on.
- Do not attempt to do this yourself. Phone the Gas Safe Register on 0800 408 5500
- See this government leaflet for simple tips on keeping you and your loved ones safe.
- Register for Floodline Warnings Direct
- Contact Floodline 0345 988 1188 and listen to recorded flood advice messages or speak to Environment Agency staff
- Visit the Environment Agency website to view the flood warnings (updated every 15 minutes) and the FloodAlerts map
- You can also visit the gov.uk website for additional flooding advice
Check out our leaflet on the flooding risk for Bedfordshire for more advice [Download – Coming Soon].
- Are your children prepared for an emergency?
- Cyber Advice [Coming Soon]
- What If…? Offers a selection of games to help teach and prepare your children for if the worse should happen. You can access the games here (not available on mobile devices).
Please Note: There is a known issue with the flood game and we are working to resolve this.