When a site is found to be at risk of flooding, or in a flood risk zone, certain types of building, uses, or other development require specialist reports to show that the development will not increase the risk of flooding elsewhere, and that those using the site will be safe. Such assessments are known as Flood Risk Assessments (or FRA’s) and are usually undertaken by qualified flood risk assessors.
In most cases however, the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the National Planning Practice Guidance (NPPG) require that a “Sequential Test” must also be undertaken. A flood risk Sequential Test is an entirely different type of report to an FRA. The NPPF states:
“The aim of the Sequential Test is to steer new development to areas with the lowest probability of flooding. Development should not be allocated or permitted if there are reasonably available sites appropriate for the proposed development in areas with a lower probability of flooding.”
A Sequential Test is not a technical flood risk assessment; and instead requires a planning consultancy to properly undertake research into locally available sites which meet the development criteria. This should then be set against the background of local needs, development targets, and policies set out by the council, government, and the Environment Agency to ensure the final report is robust.
Plainview Planning regularly undertake Sequential Test assessments. If you require a flood risk Sequential Test, please contact one of our team via firstname.lastname@example.org, who will be happy to help.