As we’ve seen in recent months with the large number of homes and cities that have been destroyed due to flood waters associated with hurricanes, large amounts of water can cause an untold amount of damage to institutions large and small. Because of this, it’s become increasingly important for citizens to know what they can do to protect themselves before a flood occurs and also know what to do if they get caught in flood waters. So to help you be better prepared for this situation, here are three things you can do that will keep your home and family safe during a flood.
Understanding “Flood Watch” Versus “Flood Warning”
The first step toward being prepared for a bad situation is gaining more knowledge about floods and how they work. For many people in flood-prone areas, you’ve often heard the phrases “flood watch” and “flood warning”. Knowing what each of these phrases means can help you be better prepared for a bad situation. According to Ready.gov, a “flood watch” means that you should be aware that a flood is possible in your area. However, a “flood warnin”g means that you need to start taking action because a flood is either currently happening in your area or will start very soon. By understanding what these two terms mean, you can better handle the situation you find yourself in.
Know Your Home’s Vulnerabilities
To best keep your home protected from floods and standing water in general, you need to know the areas of your home that could be vulnerable. According to National Geographic, this may mean constructing barriers that will keep water out of your home or sealing up certain walls or areas that may get most water damaged. Additionally, if at all possible, you should avoid getting or building a home that resides in a floodplain, which can greatly increase the chances of you having to deal with problems associated with flooding.
Steer Clear of Flood Waters
Once a flood is underway, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends staying out of the flood waters as much as possible. An unknown amount of insects, toxins, and other dangers may be lurking just under the surface of the flood waters. Also, you should never use flood water for anything like cooking, cleaning, or drinking. If you don’t have water stored up for emergencies, try to fill up your tub, sinks, and other large containers with fresh water before the flooding gets too bad. This will hopefully serve you for any period of time where you can’t get easy access to fresh, clean water.
If you want to feel more prepared for potential flooding in your area, use the tips mentioned above to help you do just that.