NEW GOVERNMENT policy designed to prevent developers' building on floodplains still puts people and buildings at unacceptable flood risk, insurance companies said last week.
Jane Milne, property and households manager at the Association of British Insurers (ABI), said that 'acceptable' flood risk zones considered 'acceptable' under new planning guidance were still not safe enough because they have a one in 100 chance of being flooded.
Milne's comments followed the publication last week of Planning Policy Guideline 25 (PPG25) by the Department of the Environment Food & Rural Affairs.
'A one percent risk is still quite large, ' said Milne, adding that climate change would also make it likely that a current 1% risk could be a 4% to 5% risk within a decade.
But the ABI said that damage to properties could be reduced in future if the Environment Agency's revised building standards were as a supplement to PPG25.
ABI wants developers on flood plains to design for damage limitation, for example by placing electric power points further up walls and by using the ground floors of new houses as garage space.
Local authorities would be able to demand compliance with the guidelines in exchange for granting planning permission.