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Identifying groundwater flood risk

Groundwater flooding occurs when the water table, the water level below ground, rises above the ground surface.

During heavy rainfall, the water level in the ground may rise to a point in which it floods basements, or groundwater at the surface may cause damage to properties and infrastructure.

Groundwater flooding is caused by the soil and bedrock below reaching and passing its water holding capacity.

It is not the gathering of water on paved surfaces or the runoff of surface water down slopes, and isn't always linked to a location’s distance from a watercourse.

Unlike fluvial (river) flooding and surface water flooding, there are no free groundwater flood risk maps.

The British Geological Survey has recently produced the first national hazard data set for groundwater flooding.

Groundwater flooding is most likely to happen in areas with underlying permeable rocks, called aquifers. These can be regional in scale, such as large areas of chalk or sandstone, or more local scale aquifers. Find out if your property or workplace is located on an aquifer in the Environment Agency’s database.

We have records of previous flood events that we have been informed about, including groundwater flooding. Please contact us for queries of this dataset for specific areas email: