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Flood Icon
What if…
Flood
Understanding
Floods

What is a Flood: Floods are created by heavy or steady rain over several hours of days.  Ground becomes saturated with water, forcing excess water to run off into the lowest lying point in the area.  Water outlets, canals, creeks, streams, rivers, reservoirs and lakes will be inundated with water run-off causing swelling and excessive runoff into public access locations.    A flash flood is caused by rapidly rising water along a stream or low lying location.  There are four types of floods that you should prepare for (depending on your location), Tidal waves, river flooding, lowland flooding and flash floods.

Location:  Coast lines or nearby ocean; Tidal waves.  Flat planes surrounding large rivers; River Flooding.  Area 1-2 feet below the surrounding plain; lowland flooding.  Location is by relatively narrow canyons or valleys the descent from nearby mountains; Flash Floods.

Duration: Floods can take as little as 1 hour to being flooding chain, Most often hours of rain will begin a chain of severe flooding events.  You have seconds to respond to flash flooding events.

Caveat:  Stay out of direct flow areas.  Nighttime travel escalates risk of emergency situations due to lack of light to properly see where water swelling has expanded.  Never underestimate the swiftness of water flow. Flooding is strong enough to carry a semi truck down river at 30-50 miles per hour, in less than 2-3 feet of water!  Fooding will wash out septic tanks and sewer systems.  It is important to have a mobile water filter to filter and purify all contaminated water for hygiene and drinking purposes.

5 Steps to Survive
Floods
  1. Always have a 72 hour emergency or 72 hour evacuation bag prepared for each family member, including animals in the household. Flood evacuations…similar to fire evacuations will only allow you minutes to vacate your location.
  2. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, evacuate all individuals to a location on higher ground *away from any water source and remain there until further notice. Have carrying cases for your household pets and begin moving out larger animals (horses, cattle, goats etc) immediately to evacuation locations.
  3. Stay away from any swift moving water ways.
  4. Never attempt to drive your vehicle across a flooded area with noticeable current.
  5. Don’t attempt to swim or walk through a flooded out area. There may be sharp objects such as glass, sticks, metal and debris that may lacerate your skin. Open wounds are perfect Petri dishes for contaminated water to infect and cause additional first aid related emergency situations.
Flood
Checklist
  • Water- at least 1 gallon per person per day (3 days worth), Water filters and forward osmosis bags are a great alternative to combat contaminated water sources. High-Capacity, mobile Water Filter; to provide potable water from contaminated water sources
  • Food- At least 3 day supply of non-perishable, easy to prepare, mobile stove for cooking food. *Always have waterproof matches in your food mess kit. Store all Emergency Supplies in an easy-to-use container.
  • Large Trauma/ Triage First Aid Kit include, (7 days worth of medications and cash)
  • Multi-purpose tool, Gas/Water shut off key
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Personal Hygiene and sanitation items
  • Battery powered, hand-cranked radio with NOAA channel; two way radios to call for help if trapped. Have local emergency channels dialed in for quick reference of emergency directions and evacuation locations.
  • Fire Blankets, Fire Ladders (2-3 story)
  • Rain Gear, extra clothing, hat, sturdy shoes (in case of evacuation), rubber gloves, rubber boots
  • Family and emergency contact information (laminate), Water Proof Document Holders
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier , bowl)
  • Sturdy saw; to assist in cutting fallen debris and creating emergency travel paths
  • Maps of Area
  • Insect repellant, insect / mosquito netting
After a Flood Strikes
  • Take pictures of destruction in home for insurance purposes. Check your policy before any emergency to insure flood damage and/or coverage.
  • Always check for downed power lines, poles, dead animals, and other debris that may cause additional emergency risks.
  • Listen to a portable, battery operated / hand crank radio for updated emergency information around your area. Evacuation locations and emergency supply sites will be publicized to assist.
  • Approach damaged homes, buildings, and flood damaged areas cautiously. Doors, ceilings, porches, overhangs will be compromised and will pose a threat of collapse.
  • Throw away all food, water, household items that may have been contaminated by flood waters. *check with authorities for instructions on disposal sights etc. Remember: Flood waters will have contaminants, such as fecal matter, dead animal / human corpses, insect infestation, Gasoline and other toxic chemical waste and anything that it might have picked up from industry establishments. Do not allow animals, children of others to play in the flood sediment to avoid serious disease and injury.
  • If there is a smell of natural (smells like a rotten Egg) or propane gas or hear noises that resemble a hissing snake, leave the area immediately and call the fire department or 911. Not only will these gasses cause death if ingested over a short period of time, but they may also provide fuel for an devastating explosion. Remember: One disaster will generally create opportunities for many more disasters if you are not prepared and aware of their dangers.