Did you know that floods are the most common natural disasters in the U.S.? Flooding can result from rain, snow, storms, storm surges, and dam or other water system overflows. Flash floods often come quickly and without warning, causing damages and even taking lives. When under a flood warning, find safe shelter as quickly as possible! Do not ever walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. It only takes 6 inches of water to knock a person off their feet and only a foot of water to sweep away a vehicle. Additionally, it is best to stay away from bridges over fast-moving water and evacuate when told to do so.
Flood Safety Preparation
You can visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center for information on the types of flood risks in your area so you can best prepare. Make sure your family is signed up for your community’s warning system. Additionally, the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. Make sure your family has an evacuation and shelter plan and that you practice, especially if you have small children. When at risk for flooding, gather supplies ahead of time so that you are already prepared if you need to evacuate. Keep each individual’s needs in mind, particularly in regards to medication and other health issues. Keep important documents and other critical items in a waterproof container. Lastly, get Flood insurance! Remember, your Homeowners policy does not provide flood coverage!
Even historically dry areas have the possibility of flooding without warning. To keep your covered Farmers Insurance provides two tiers of Flood policies:
- Standard Risk: Covers properties in the NFIP high-risk zones, where homeowners are required to hold Flood insurance.
- Preferred Risk: Covers low-to-moderate risk zones at a reduced cost.
Did you know that you don’t need to live near water to be at risk for flooding. Low-to-moderate risk zones account for 35% of Flood claims and receive 1/3 of flooding federal disaster assistance. Ask your agent to run a “flood zone determination” to establish what zone your property is in!
During & After the Flood
When told to do so, evacuate immediately! Never driver around barriers, on bridges over fast-moving water, or go through flood waters. If you do become trapped in flood waters, stay inside your vehicle. If water begins to fill the inside, move to the vehicle’s roof. When in a building, go to the highest level, but never into an enclosed attic where you could be trapped. After the storm, do not return home until authorities say it is safe to do so. The aftermath of flood often leave dangerous conditions so follow these tips when attempting clean-up:
- Always wear protective gear like heavy gloves and boots.
- Use extreme caution. Snakes and other animals may have found their way into your house. Floodwaters could also be contaminated or contain downed power lines.
- Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or you are standing in water. If safe, turn off the electricity to prevent any shocks.
- Only use generators and gas-powered machines outdoors and away from any windows.
Remember to NEVER drive, walk, or play in floodwaters! It is impossible to know how deep the water is just by looking at it. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!