Be Safe During a Flood

Flooding may be an unavoidable act of mother nature but taking steps to stay safe is not.

Every year, more deaths happen due to flooding than any other peril related to thunderstorms. The most common flood deaths happen when an automobile is driven into dangerous floodwater. Luckily, you can take steps to protect yourself and your family.

During a Flood Watch or Warning

Listen to your local TV station for updates.

Have immunization records handy (or know the year of your last tetanus shot).

Gather emergency supplies.

Store immunization records in a waterproof container.

Prepare an emergency water and food supply. Have at least one gallon of water per day for every person and every pet. Prepare at least a 3-day supply.

Bring in outdoor possessions like trash cans, lawn furniture, grills) or tie them down tightly.

If evacuation appears necessary: cut off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve.

After Flooding Happens

Don’t drive through standing water and flooded areas.

Do not drink flood water, or use it to brush teeth, wash dishes, or wash/prepare food.

If you evacuated: return to your residence only after local authorities have said it is safe to do so.

Listen to water advisory to see if your water is safe for bathing and drinking.

During a water advisory, use only boiled or bottled water for cooking, drinking, etc.

The initial damage due to a flood is not the only danger. Standing floodwater can also bring chemical hazards, spread infectious diseases, and cause injuries.

After you return home if you discover that your house was flooded, practice safe cleaning. Remove and throw out insulation and drywall that was contaminated with floodwater. Throw out items that can’t be cleaned and washed with a bleach solution. This includes pillows, mattresses, carpeting, and stuffed toys. Homeowners might want to temporarily store items outside of the house until insurance claims can be filed.