For many people in the UK and within many countries throughout the world, flooding is a real and present danger. The map below gives us an indication of the scale of the problem within the UK alone. Flooding is a problem that experts predict will only get worse in the future as climate change drives increasingly unpredictable weather patterns; old and inadequate flood defences grow increasingly ineffectual and urban conurbations sprawl increasingly, year by year, across flood plains.
Indeed, flood-risk is becoming a matter of paramount concern for the insurance industry but perhaps more important is the devastating cost to individuals and entire communities. For instance, the floods of summer 2007 cost the UK a total of £3.2bn. The majority of this figure, some two-thirds (£2.3bn), was paid for by homeowners and businesses according to the Environment Agency. The average cost was between £23,000 and £30,000 per flooded home but a quarter of homeowners were not fully covered by insurance. Some 30 per cent of households were forced to relocate to temporary accommodation, one third of which for more than a year. The average cost incurred per flooded business was between £75,000 and £112,000, with 95 per cent of companies covered by insurance. In both cases costs were predominantly paid by inadequately insured local people.
Structural damage to buildings and assets is ultimately repairable but psychological scars take much longer to heal. Indeed, recovering from a flood can take a considerable amount of time, effort and expense however overcoming the associated trauma is often just the start. Often homes and businesses become uninsurable after repeated floods, meaning owners cannot sell their properties unless drastic steps are taken to protect them. These unfortunate people are amongst the many property owners and occupiers who will hopefully benefit from the installation of Flood Toilet Sewage Stoppers.
Other figures from the Environment Agency indicate that flooding costs on average 28 times as much as being burgled and 4 times as much as a house fire. Despite this, just 6 per cent of UK households have taken steps to protect their home from flooding compared with 80 per cent of households that take precautions against fire and 54 per cent that protect against burglary. This low percentage is most likely due to the lack of affordable and practical measures that are currently available on the market, but represents a significant opportunity for marketers of Flood Toilet Sewage Stoppers to sell worldwide.
In assessing the potential market for this equipment, it is also pertinent to look at the market for small non-return valves to be sold in conjunction with the retail of Flood Toilet Sewage Stoppers for protection of other plumbing facilities, e.g. baths, showers, sinks etc.
Furthermore property that has effective sewerage contamination protection can only help to reduce insurance costs and make properties more attractive purchases. In such a climate, this exciting innovation cannot fail to be a resounding success.