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Flood and Water Management Act 2010

Section 6: “Other definitions”

28.Subsections (1) to (5) define terms that relate to the various sources of flood risk. The definition of groundwater is different from that in Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2000 establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy (known as the Water Framework Directive). In the Act it is defined in a way that is relevant to flood risk management so as to include any water which is below the surface of the ground and in contact with the ground or subsoil. This does not include water in buried pipes or other containers.

29.”Surface run-off” means precipitation on the surface of the ground, but if such precipitation drains to a watercourse, drainage system or the sewerage system, and water overflows from there to be on the surface of the ground, this water is not within the definition of surface run-off. Subsection (6) brings lakes, ponds, or other areas of water that flow into a watercourse within the meaning of a watercourse for the purpose of the definition of surface run-off. Drainage system has the same meaning as in paragraph 1 of Schedule 3 to the Act.

30.Subsections (7) to (12) define various bodies which are “risk management authorities” (subsection (13)). Subsections (7) and (9) introduce the concept of a “lead local flood authority”, which is the unitary authority or, where there is no unitary authority, the county council for an area in England, and the county council or the county borough council in Wales. These bodies lead on the local flood risk management strategy. The bodies which exercise flood or coastal erosion risk management functions or related functions are collectively defined as “risk management authorities” under subsection (13).

31.Subsections (14), (15) and (16) define English and Welsh risk management authorities (which include some cross-border authorities) as well as cross-border internal drainage boards.

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