As Storm Eunice approaches, it is sensible to consider some things you can do to help to reduce the impact of extremely bad weather conditions and what can be done in the aftermath of a storm if your property is affected by damage or flooding.

Preparing in advance 

•    Listen out for weather warnings on local radio and TV and follow Local Authority guidance
•    Check for flood updates from the Environment Agency for your region
•    If you are in a flood risk area try to move valuable, perishable and essential items upstairs or to a high place
•    Remove or secure any outdoor items which might be susceptible to storm damage or cause damage if airborne, such as trampolines and other children's toys, freestanding BBQ's, garden furniture etc
•    Charge mobile phones and keep them handy 
•    Make sure you have emergency contact details for your insurer/s (including your policy number), local authority and utility companies
•    If you keep vehicles outside, then try to park them away from trees or other structures that could cause damage. Likewise, vehicles should be moved to higher ground and away from potential flood damage

During and in the aftermath of a storm or flood 

•    Do not do anything that will put you or your household at risk
•    Contact your property or motor insurers as soon as possible. Most will have 24-hour emergency helplines, which can give advice on next steps and arrange repairs as quickly as possible
•    If necessary, arrange temporary repairs to stop any damage getting worse. Tell your insurer and keep any receipts
•    Take photos of the damage where possible
•    If you need to travel by car, then check local TV and radio for travel bulletins in advance. If you do need to drive, treat flood water with extreme caution and, ideally, seek an alternative route to avoid water damage to your vehicle