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Last Updated: Monday, 17 December 2007, 16:55 GMT
Industry responds to flood report
Flood warning
A flood warning in Tewkesbury after 24 hours of torrential rain
An interim report into the summer floods has said the country needs to be better prepared.

Sir Michael Pitt wants the government, councils and the public to take the issue more seriously. A number of organisations have responded to the report.

ASSOCIATION OF BRITISH INSURERS

The Association of British Insurers says it has already handled 165,000 claims resulting in a bill so far of more than 3bn.

Stephen Haddrill, the ABI's director general said he supported the findings: "Michael Pitt has confirmed that radical action is needed to improve Britain's protection against flooding.

"We are especially pleased to see his endorsement for our call for effective coordination on flood risk, particularly for drainage and surface water. The g government must now support the Pitt recommendations with action and money."

He added: "This report recognises the positive response of the insurance industry to this summer's floods."

WATER UK

Water UK represents all the statutory water and waste suppliers in the UK.

It has welcomed the report as a useful mix of guidance. Sir Michael recommends that critical infrastructure should be assessed for vulnerability to flooding.

A spokesman for Water UK said that is already happening: "This is something that has always been part of the water industry's stock and trade - risk management - because we are dealing with a critical service.

"This is something that is in hand and will be part of the future in the light of what we know about climate change scenarios and the serious events of the summer."

Next month the organisation will publish its own review into the floods and long-term policy.

GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE

Police car
Police officers were one of several agencies dealing with the crisis
Gloucestershire's chief constable Timothy Brain has called for the final report to be stronger.

He led the response to the flooding crisis in the county which was particularly badly hit.

Mr Brain said Sir Michael's report should have been bolder: "I urge him now to go further and ensure the government provides a national stockpile of food, fuel, water and sanitation products so these are available in the event of a future massive failure of supply."

But he supported other parts of the report: "I am particularly pleased he recommends that the government urgently considers establishing arrangements for the acquisition of supplies during a major emergency."

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