So, you want to build a fence in a flood-prone area. I bet you want it to survive floods with minimal repairs too. A conventional fence probably won’t cut it, but some design tweaks may just get you there.

Typically, the degree to which a fence can survive floods, particularly when floodwaters are loaded with debris, will depend on a range of factors, such as: position of fence; strength of strainers and posts; number of rails and coated wires; and fence height.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

Positioning the fencing:

Placing the fence as far away from the waterway as possible and parallel to the anticipated direction of flood flow tends to result in less debris getting caught up and therefore the load on the fence is reduced.

End Assemblies/ Strainers:

Make sure you construct solid end assemblies (timber or steel posts no shorter than 3m – these must be half in/ half out of the ground). It’s advised that these posts are rammed in as they’re almost twice as strong as a post that has been placed in an over-sized hole with the earth rammed back around it. For really flood prone areas we advise to use additional steel or timber strainers every 4-5 posts for extra bit of strength.

Fence posts & spacings:

Use longer posts for this section eg: 2.4m or 3m posts and extend the post spacings out to 4meters. This will reduce debris getting caught up and again putting more pressure on the fence.

Number of rails/ coated wire:

Reducing the number of rails or coated wires in this area will also help limit the load carried by a fence during a flood. For this reason, electric fences which use fewer wires than other conventional fences are often the best choice in flood-prone areas. Also avoid using mesh fencing in these areas too.

If you need help with planning and designing your fencing near flood prone areas or just planning your fencing in general, the team at Duncan Equine are here to help. We have over 30years experience in the fencing industry and like yourselves we are involved with horses on a daily basis – so we only want the best for them!