Floods are unpredictable, can happen in multiple ways, and can happen anywhere. They can cause endless amounts of physical damage and emotional turmoil. And they are the number one natural disaster in the United States. But, by following a few specific guidelines, you can better prepare for, and help you and your loved ones recover from flooding.
How to Prepare for and Recover from Flooding
1) Know what the flood risk is in your area.
Tune in to NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards, local radio, and/or television stations for information and monitor alert notifications. You can also plug your address in HERE to see how frequently flooding can occur in your area.
2) Review potential areas of flooding risk with your home.
Most people just think about securing doors or any other main entrance into their home. But water can also enter your home through your foundation, garage doors, and gaps around pipes. So make sure to check for all of these possibilities with your own home and further secure what you need to.
3) Prepare your home and property.
When it comes to preparing your home for a flood, your main focus is going to be diverting the overflow of water. To do this, you will want to set up flood barriers and sandbags, seal up any openings in your home, elevate critical utilities, install a water alarm in your basement to let you know if water begins to accumulate there, clear debris from gutters and downspouts, and move all valuable and documents to a safe place.
4) Stock up on supplies.
It is important to make sure you have all the resources and tools you need to deal with any situations that may come from flooding. Download the PREPIFY APP to help you know and gather what you need.
5) Evacuate if necessary.
Sometimes flooding will require you to evacuate your home. To ensure that you will be able to act quickly if you need to leave, you need to plan ahead by doing the following things…
- Know your community’s flood evacuation plan and be aware of several escape routes.
- If you are evacuating by car, make sure your car has enough fuel and is in good working condition.
- If you will need transportation, make arrangements in advance.
- Come up with a place to stay until you can return home.
6) Review first aid techniques.
In any emergency situation, there is a high possibility of your self or someone else getting hurt. Which is why it is so important to frequently brush up on your first aid skills so that if necessary, you can take care of your self or someone in need.
7) Clean up.
Once flooding has subsided and you are able to being the clean up phase; there are a few things to do/remember.
- Make sure you have flood insurance. (Do this before you experience a flood)
- Contact your insurance company and keep trace of all of your conversations.
- Take pictures of any property damage. This will help immensely with your insurance claim.
- Get professional advice on drying any areas that have been flooded.
- When you finally begin to clean up, make sure to wear protective cleaning gear. You don’t know what was in the water that came in contact with your property, so you don’t want to start touching things with your bare hands!
It is never too late to begin preparing for a flood. In fact, the sooner you start, the better! Because, taking action today can help you save lives and property in the future.