Flash flooding has been an issue in many areas of the country this summer. From the Midwest to Arizona, we have seen flash flood warnings popping up almost daily. Flash flooding is the rapid flooding of an area caused by heavy rain that is usually associated with storms. Flash flooding may also occur when ice melts quickly or when a man-made structure – such as a dam – collapses. A flash flood warning means the danger of flooding is imminent.
Preparation is key when it comes to any emergency situation. Whether the emergency is flash flooding, power failure, blizzard, or any other situation that may leave you separated from the outside world, an emergency bag is crucial. Items to include in your emergency bag: First aid kit, bottled water, canned food, can opener, battery operated radio, flashlights, glasses, medication, a cell phone, clothing, blankets, and extra batteries. Keep a separate bag in your car as well for such emergency situations.
Plan an escape route as well. If flash flooding threatens your area, make sure you are familiar with several different ways to evacuate if necessary. You don’t need to wait for authorities to evacuate your home. If you feel the area is unsafe and it’s still safe to leave, do so. Know where your main shut-off valves are for utilities so they can be turned off prior to evacuation.
NEVER drive through floodwaters. If you aren’t able to evacuate without driving through a flooded street, turn around and stay put at the highest and safest area of your home. Driving through floodwaters is one of the biggest causes of death during flash flooding. Cars are easily swept away in less water than you may think. It’s also very difficult to tell how deep floodwaters run since they are dark. They may not appear to be moving on the surface but may rushing below the surface.
Lastly, do not return to your flooded home until it is deemed safe to do so by local authorities. Even if floodwaters have receded, things like downed power lines and broken gas lines can cause major problems. Water damage cleanup can begin as soon as access to the home is given.
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The team that was sent to our house was wonderful. Their experience and professionalism in our situation was outstanding. I was concerned about our children and they took every precaution (air purifier, microbial spray) to keep them safe. Not only did they have good work ethics, they were personable and caring as well.Angela and Scott S.