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Emergency: Floods

Be Prepared When This Happens To You !!!

Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural hazards. Some floods develop over a period of days, but flash floods can result in raging waters in just a few minutes. Water runs off steeper ground very rapidly, causing natural drainage systems to overflow with rushing flood waters and a deadly cargo of rocks, mud, smashed trees and other debris. Mudslides are also a danger created by flood conditions.

Remember - even very small streams, gullies, creeks, culverts, dry stream beds, or low-lying ground that may appear harmless in dry weather can flood.

1. If you see any possibility of a flash flood occurring, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.

2. If you live where it might flood, prepare to evacuate and to seek shelter.

3. Listen to radio and television for information and instructions from you local government and emergency managers.

4. If local authorities release flood warnings:
  • Fill your bathtub with water to ensure that you have an uncontaminated supply in case services are cut off.
  • Put sandbags or other protection in place, away from house walls, to prevent flood waters from reaching your home.
5. If you are advised to evacuate:
  • Secure your home before leaving. If you have time and have not received other instructions from local authorities, bring outdoor belongings - such as garbage cans, garden equipment and furniture - inside the house or tie them down securely. Move essential items and furniture to the upper floors of your house; lock doors and windows.
  • Follow recommended evacuation routes. Do not try to find shortcuts on your own; they may be blocked.
  • Leave early enough to avoid being marooned by flooded roads. Be alert for washed-out roadways and bridges; many roads parallel streams and other drainage channels and may be swept away or covered by flood waters.
  • Tell others where you are going.
  • Do not drive into flooded areas. If flood waters rise around your car, abandon it and move to higher ground, if you can do so safely. You and your vehicle can be quickly swept away as flood waters rise.
  • Stay away from flooded areas - even if it seems safe, the water may still be rising. Never try to cross a flooding stream on foot.
  • Do not return to the flooded area until you are given permission by local authorities.