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Property Flood Resilience Delivery Group

Building Standards Technical Handbooks Standard 3.3 Flooding and groundwater: Call for Evidence 


We are seeking the view of users on Standard 3.3  ‘Flooding and ground water’ and the associated guidance held within the Technical Handbooks. Our aim is to better understand where, from a user’s perspective, the current handbooks are helpful and where users experience difficulties (and why) we are also looking for suggestions for improvements that can be made.


In support of meeting the requirements set under building regulation, the Technical Handbooks and other related guidance documents are published as the principal source to support those involved in the design, construction and verification of buildings.

Flooding cannot be prevented. In Scotland an estimated 284,000 homes and premises are at risk of flooding; with an additional 110,000 properties projected to be at risk by the 2080s under a high emissions scenario. Around 229,000 of the properties at risk are homes which means that 1 in 11 homes are currently at risk of flooding. This rises to 1 in 9 when climate change is taken into account.  Scotland needs to accept and address the risk and opportunities to make our properties more resilient to flooding. The 2019 ‘Living with Flooding’ Action Plan (Action 3) recommends ‘investigate and provide evidence that informs changes to the Scottish Building Regulations Technical Handbooks’, with the aim of ensuring that the guidance supports and encourages flood resilient and resistant construction and repairs.

Building Standards may be met by adopting alternative solutions to that offered by the Technical Handbook guidance; however, following the guidance remains the most common approach. This survey seeks feedback on whether the guidance to standard 3.3 Flooding and groundwater of the Technical Handbooks could be improved and/or expanded to provide further guidance on flood resistant and resilient construction.

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* 1. Is there guidance to standard 3.3 of the Technical Handbooks which could be clearer and better understood?

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* 2. Are there any clauses within the guidance to standard 3.3 which could be removed or updated?

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* 3. Should mandatory standard 3.3 be strengthened to assist in flood resilient and resistant construction?

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* 4. How many times have you referred to standard 3.3 and its associated guidance in the last 12 months?

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* 5. When referring to standard 3.3 have you then used the additional documents highlighted within the guidance?

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* 6. Would example construction details of flood resistant floors, walls and junctions etc in the guidance to standard 3.3 be useful?

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* 7. Would guidance/best practice on flood damage repair and remedial works to existing buildings be useful in the guidance to standard 3.3?

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