4 Sep 2007 07:00 AM
Flood review website launch

CABINET OFFICE News Release (CAB76-07) issued by The Government News Network on 4 September 2007

Flood Review website launched for public comments

Sir Michael Pitt, the independent chair overseeing the government's Lessons Learned review into this summer's floods, is calling on those affected to log on and share their experiences.

The review, which is being led by the Cabinet Office, will study the emergency response to the floods in June and July and look at ways to reduce the risk and impact of flooding in future.

Sir Michael, who in the coming months will visit communities affected by the floods, welcomes comments, ideas and suggestions from all sections of the community regarding the review, as well as feedback on the experiences of those affected by the floods or whose home or business is susceptible to flooding.

A website has been set up to allow the public to submit their comments at: http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/floodingreview

Sir Michael said: "I intend to spend time visiting affected communities, talking to residents, local businesses and members of front-line services to get their first-hand experiences.

"In the meantime, I'd like people to log on to the website and share their comments - all contributions will be taken on board and will factor into the review process."

Notes to editors

To submit your comments to the Review team go to http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/floodingreview and click on the comments box. Alternatively, you can write directly to the Review team at: Sir Michael Pitt, Independent Chair, Flooding Lessons Learned Review Cabinet Office, 10 Great George Street, London, SW1P 3AE

The specific objectives for the Review are:

i. To understand why the flooding was so extensive.

ii. To learn lessons on how in future we can best predict, prevent or mitigate the scale and impact of flooding incidents in a potentially changing environment.

iii. To look at how best to co-ordinate the response to flooding in future, including the significant social implications for communities.

iv. To establish what access to support, equipment, facilities and information is needed by those involved in the response at local, regional and national levels.

v. To ensure the public has as much access as possible to information on the risk of flooding to allow them to take appropriate precautions, be adequately informed on developments as an emergency unfolds, and be looked after properly in the immediate aftermath.

vi. To establish how the transition from response to recovery is best managed.

vii. To identify those aspects of the response that worked well and should be promoted and reinforced. viii. To make recommendations in each of these areas to improve the UK's preparedness for flooding events in the future.

In his role as Independent Chairman of the Lessons Learned Review, Sir Michael will report to Hilary Benn, Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Hazel Blears, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government; and Ed Miliband, Minister for the Cabinet Office.

Sir Michael will chair the review, supported by teams drawn in the main from Defra, CLG and the Cabinet Office. These teams will be assisted by experts from other bodies such as the Met Office, the Environment Agency, local authorities and major utilities.

The review will draw on evidence from all those involved in the emergency response, those who suffered the impact of the flooding - including businesses and public organisations such as schools and hospitals - and the public and their locally elected representatives.

Cabinet Office Press Office 22 Whitehall LONDON SW1A 2WH