Is it a state of emergency?
If your area is prone to floods, you’ll want to prepare ahead so you and your family are as safe as possible should it happen to you.
With the extreme weather conditions that we are seeing today, everybody in our nations (USA as well as Canada) should be prepared for a state of emergency at all times. Strong tropical storms and hurricanes crossing our land often cause flooding, and that is what I’d like to talk about today. Flooding can happen even in areas that are not prone to it.
Top ten things to do to safeguard your home for flash floods:
- Prevent water from entering your home – If you are expecting heavy rains or storms to hit your locality, particularly if you live in a flood-prone area, you should cover your doors and windows with metal sheets, sandbags, or plywood. You can also use silicone sealant to ensure that water will not enter your home.
- Shut off your utilities – Turn off all your utilities; gas, electricity and water, at the mains. Also remember to unplug all your electrical appliances and store them high up, on the second floor even.
- Be mindful of your appliances and furniture – Ensure that your furniture and appliances are kept in high areas or move what you can upstairs. If you do not have an upper floor, just raise such items off the floor on blocks or bricks. Remove carpets, curtains and even internal doors if possible. Store them all in high places to protect them.
- Don’t forget your important papers, pictures and other personal items. If you can’t get them to an upper floor of your home, put them in sealed bags protected from water.
- Stabilize all objects outside your house. Rakes, shovels and more should be put away since they can float away and pose danger to others.
More information for you about floods and your safety:
- Information is crucial during situations like these. Keep listening to the radio for announcements and updates.
- Cooperate fully with local authorities and emergency services. If they require you to evacuate, follow them without delay.
- Since electricity will almost certainly be unavailable, ensure you are fully prepared before night fall. It is much more difficult and unsafe to perform tasks or chores in the dark.
- Share any updated information you have with your neighbors, particularly the elderly. If you have room, offer to take them in or help them secure their own homes.
- Stay inside your house. Floodwater can kill, especially if it is raging. Do not attempt to go out. Rapid flowing water that is six inches high could knock you over. Two feet of water could make your car float away.
- Ensure your pets and cars are in a safe and secured location. Once you hear of a flood warning, get to and stay on the second floor of your home.
- There may be objects floating in the water, so do not attempt to swim through raging flood to rescue or retrieve them. You could be swept away, hurt, or knocked over by objects that are in the water.
- Floodwater may also be dirty and contaminated with sewage. I don’t need to tell you what swimming in sewage could do to you, do I?
- River bridges and riverbanks are dangerous places to be near or on during floods. Be sure to steer away from them if possible. There have been many cases where floodwater has destroyed or collapsed a bridge.