Lead Local Flood Authorities
Lead Local Flood Authorities (LLFAs) are all Unitary Authorities and two tier County Councils. Under the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 LLFAs have been assigned a number of duties and responsibilities relating to the management of local flood risk.
Sources of local flood risk include:
• Groundwater flooding- caused when the water levels in the ground rise above the surface level mainly as a result of prolonged rainfall causing the ground to become saturated.
• Surface water (rainfall) runoff- when water flowing over surfaces that cannot easily absorb water, such as roads and roofs, overwhelms the drainage network and accumulates on the surface.
• Ordinary watercourses- when any watercourse which is not classed as a main river such as a culvert or stream, cannot cope with large volumes of water during or after heavy rain.
Flood risks from the sea, main rivers or reservoirs remain the responsibility of the Environment Agency and not that of the LLFA.
In addition to existing responsibilities, LLFAs are required to:
• Develop, maintain, implement and monitor a Local Flood Risk Management Strategy.
• Maintain a register of assets (physical features that have a significant effect on flooding in the local area) and identify those responsible for them.
• Investigate significant local flooding incidents and publish the results of such investigations (see the Flood Investigations page for more information).
• Establish an approval body for design , building and operation of Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS)
• Issue consents for altering, removing or replacing certain structures or features that may affect the flow of ordinary watercourses (See the Ordinary Watercourse Consent page for further information).
LLFAs also have the powers to:
• Request information regarding flooding from any organisation or person.
• Undertake works to manage and prevent surface water and groundwater flooding.
• Designate structures and features that affect flooding and coastal erosion.
Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment
The Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment (PFRA) is a summary of flood risk from local sources in Southampton and will feed into the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy. The assessment provides a high level summary of significant flood risk from surface water, ordinary watercourses and groundwater and describes both the probability and harmful consequences of past and future flooding.
The assessment takes account of:
• The location and characteristics of watercourses,
• The location of homes and economic activity, and
• The predicted impact of climate change.
The Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment has been complied using readily available information from a number of sources, including the Environment Agency’s national datasets and existing local products (e.g. the Surface Water Management Plan and Strategic Flood Risk Assessment). A copy of the PFRA is available to download from the downloadable documents section on this page.
More information on the Flood Risk Regulations 2009 and the PFRA is available by following the link to the Environment Agency at the bottom of this page.
Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS)
Southampton City Council, as a Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA) has the duty to develop a Local Flood Risk Management Strategy for the management of local flood risk. The LFRMS should outline the LLFAs approach to local flood risk management both now and in the future, and is a key requirement of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010.
The LFRMS must specify:
(a) The risk management authorities in the authority's area,
(b) The flood and coastal erosion risk management functions that may be exercised by those authorities in relation to the area,
(c) The objectives for managing local flood risk (including any objectives included in the authority's flood risk management plan prepared in accordance with the Flood Risk Regulations 2009),
(d) The measures proposed to achieve those objectives,
(e) How and when the measures are expected to be implemented,
(f) The costs and benefits of those measures, and how they are to be paid for,
(g) The assessment of local flood risk for the purpose of the strategy,
(h) How and when the strategy is to be reviewed, and
(i) How the strategy contributes to the achievement of wider environmental objectives.
In addition to meeting the above requirements, the LFRMS must be consistent with the National Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy, approved by Parliament in July 2011.
Development on the Southampton Local Flood Risk Management Strategy will formally commence in Autumn 2012 and it is anticipated that a final draft for consultation will be ready by April 2013.
During November 2012 we invited the public to take part in a short online questionnaire to find out more about views and experiences of flooding across the city. The results of questionnaire will be used to help us develop the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy.