With an extensive background in domestic construction, Andrew Parker first designed the FloodSafe House in 2012, having seen at first hand the devastation caused to friends and family by flooding. He founded FloodJack International and moved from prototype to a full-size build, which was rigorously tested. The FloodSafe system is designed to detect a flood event, triggering the house to rise above flood waters on a specially designed mechanical jack system, protecting both property and residents.
The FloodSafe system could help to provide flood resilient housing solutions to the affordable and social housing sector, with real potential for use in flood-prone regions. Because their system is so novel, the company needed to be absolutely sure that it will provide benefits for people who live in a FloodSafe house. The technology is tried and tested, but to progress to a real-life rollout of FloodSafe housing, an integrated study looking at the impacts of living in this very new kind of property was required.
Technology Research Manager
Dr Sam Ramsden,
Flood Innovation Centre
Dr Kate Smith,
Flood Innovation Centre
Dr Lisa Whitehouse,
University of Hull
The Flood Innovation Centre supported FloodJack International Ltd to accelerate the commercialisation of their product. The FloodSafe system is designed to be used in the kind of modular build developments used routinely in affordable and social housing. With a focus on end-users, including housing associations and potential residents, the Flood Innovation Centre carried out an evaluation of the social and ethical impacts of the FloodSafe system.
The Flood Innovation Centre and partners developed a flood impact mitigation strategy, reviewed the social and ethical issues relating to the use of this product and developed communications with these issues in mind. We also helped develop a person specification and job outline for a new FloodJack International Ltd employee, to support the growth and development of the product from a holistic angle. Finally, we produced a Social Value projection for the company to use to secure future investment. The key to the successful delivery of this project was in the collaborative approach, drawing from the expertise found from within the University and our partner organisations, East Riding of Yorkshire Council and Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, to ensure that we addressed the multitude of benefits and concerns that might arise from a product of this type.
“Thank you for getting such qualified and passionate people involved and building a very robust package of information”
Director, FloodJack International Ltd
FloodJack have already spent several years perfecting their product. Flood Innovation Centre support has helped them bring the FloodSafe house to the marketplace more quickly. The project support and report findings were integral to FloodJack discussions and final agreement with the Hadley Group to manufacture these specialist flood resilience homes, using modern methods of modular construction.
In the event of a flood, houses without adequate property flood protection are vulnerable to significant damage to the property while the residents suffer long delays in returning to their houses while restoration work is carried out. Even for flood resilient houses there is a period of time for drying, recovery and repair before properties can be reoccupied.
The FloodJack system addresses this issue by lifting the house above the flood waters thereby significantly reducing the amount of time needed for reoccupation to the time that it takes for land clearing and external property repair and cleaning measures to be carried out. This innovation would also address and reduce the strain on insurance claims after a flooding event.