Flooding can cause catastrophic damage to properties and infrastructure when water levels rise and breach floodplains. With climate change leading to more extreme weather events every year, flooding is a growing concern for homeowners and businesses in many regions, particularly those in higher-risk areas. This is why implementing sturdy, reliable flood defences is so important, particularly when you consider that natural barriers like woodlands and hedgerows being removed puts residents at further risk. As the seasons begin to change and wet weather continues to permeate the UK, many are using this time to reflect on their flood defence choices and whether they are suitable enough.
Whilst it’s crucial to consider our methods for reducing climate change, companies and homes need to be proactive when the worst should happen. There are various types of robust flood defences available, each with its advantages. Here you will find a brief overview of the key flood defence options to consider and how they can mitigate risks.
Permanent Hard Defences
Precast concrete barriers are a popular choice for permanent flood defences. Made from robust reinforced concrete, these sturdy barriers form an immovable wall that floodwater cannot easily permeate.
Jersey barriers, kentledge blocks, and delta blocks are just some of the many concrete barrier systems that provide robust flood resilience and protection. They can be installed along roads, pathways, riversides, and other waterways prone to flooding.
- Extremely strong and durable
- Withstands high water pressure
- Permanent or temporary, depending on your needs
- Long lifespan of decades
- Low maintenance needs
- Can be reused repeatedly
- Heavy to install, often requiring machinery and additional resources
- Can come with higher upfront costs in some cases
As a leading concrete barrier supplier, Maltaward offers durable precast concrete blocks engineered to BS EN 13369. Our jersey barriers are highly stable for reliable flood defence as well as construction site safety when projects are underway in high-risk areas.
Concrete barriers make sufficient flood prevention products, offering sufficient sturdiness and robustness without the need to embed them into the ground. Compared to, for example, structures like flood defence walls, stacked concrete blocks and barriers can offer sufficient protection in even the highest of flood risk areas. While defence walls can be solid in their own applications, concrete barriers offer additional flexibility and expertly safeguard the area between the floodplain and a property.
Once in place, the barriers are filled with water for weighting and remain sturdy without the need to be drilled into the ground. The sturdy polyethylene material resists damage while providing effective flood diversion.
- Fast and easy to deploy
- Resilient polyethylene material
- Modular flexibility
- Highly visible
- Not fixed to the ground
- Can be punctured and prone to leaks if damaged
- Limited weight stability
- Not as strong in the long-term as concrete
Water-filled barriers enable quick response flood defence lasting days to months. They work well for public events and construction sites and divert smaller overflows.
MASS barriers provide sturdy, versatile flood defence protection. These interlocking galvanised steel units connect to form secure barriers against floodwaters.
Different MASS barrier products are available to hire or buy, with special products like the Visirail or Siteguard ranges possessing additional mesh fencing for increased visibility and security.
- Strong and secure construction
- Easy to transport and install
- Variety of barrier products
- Reusable for future events
- Not as stable in high winds
- Relatively heavy to manoeuvre
- Not a permanent solution
For reliable temporary flood defence lasting months to years, MASS barriers are a smart investment. Their durability provides effective protection that’s easy to deploy quickly.
These modular, freestanding barriers are more flexible and reliable than sandbags stacked together like bricks. Sandbags, while tried and tested in some applications, only provide limited protection compared to robust and weatherproof barriers. For large floodplains or high-risk areas, consider using barriers as you will get far more out of them.
Protect Your Property With Confidence
The optimal flood defences for a site depend on the flood risk, landscape and budget factors. Hard defences like concrete barriers provide reliable frontline protection, while temporary demountable defences like water or MASS barriers enable proactive and rapid responses in times of crisis.
When considering your flood protection options, it’s better to have a proactive solution in place rather than be reactive in the face of danger. To find out whether your current flood protection options are suitable enough, and for a no-obligation consultation, contact the team at Maltaward.
As leading suppliers of concrete and plastic barriers as well as a range of permanent and temporary safety blocks, we can advise on the right type of flood defence solutions for you. Contact us today for a free quote and advice.