This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com
As you may have heard, our city experienced an unprecedented flooding disaster. Last night, a severe storm dumped several inches of rain in a short amount of time. Many people who were out and about – watching the Rockets game, attending graduations and proms etc. – were caught in the flood. Many motorists were stranded in their cars all night as flood water prevented them from moving any further. Some had to abandon their cars on the roadways. Many homes have been flooded and damaged.
Except for a few power outages, our area was not severely affected and I am grateful. This morning, schools were closed, traffic lights were not working and people were asked to stay off the roadways. I was hearing about some apartments that were severely damaged causing several families to move to shelters. Today’s developments showed me how quickly an unforeseen disaster can happen and the need to be prepared is ever present.
Here are a few thoughts one what we can do to prepare for a flooding disaster:
Before a flood happens
- Pack an emergency kit or bug out bag in case you ever have to evacuate.
- Build a grab and go binder that houses all your important documents so you can easily carry it with you in case of evacuation. It is also a good idea to have a backup somewhere else such as a safe deposit box, or a relative’s home.
- Keep a battery operated weather radio so you can stay informed in case of power loss.
- Make it a habit to check weather reports and forecasts before heading off. This way you can be prepared for any possibilities. If nothing happens, you lose nothing. It does not end there. Pay attention to your surroundings and be alert for any sudden weather changes.
- Identify routes that are not prone to flooding. Plan your evacuation destination and route ahead of time.
- Keep your gas tank half full so you do not have to stop for gas.
- Include your pets in your emergency plan-many shelters do not accept pets.
- Discuss emergency plans with all family members. Designate a meeting place in the event your family members are separated.
- Check your homeowners or renters insurance policy to find out your coverages. If you are not covered, you may need supplemental insurance.
- Educate kids, especially younger drivers in the family, about the dangers of crossing flood waters.
Know the difference between a “Flood watch” vs “flood warning”
· Flood watch: means there is a possibility of flooding
· Flood warning: Flooding in the area is already occurring or is about to start.
Staying safe in a flood
Stay informed by listening to the news for any emergency announcements.
Evacuate immediately if an evacuation order is issued by authorities. Or, move to higher ground if you feel your home is likely to flood.
If your home starts to flood while you are inside, and you are unable to evacuate, move to higher ground such as an upper floor, attic, roof or even on top of tables
Flood waters are extremely polluted as it contains runoff from cars, gasoline and oil from the street, sewage, fertilizers and other toxic chemicals. Thoroughly wash your hands and any parts of your body that comes in contact with flood waters.
Disinfect everything that flood waters may have touched. Food, makeup, medicines that got wet are no longer fit for use and should be discarded.
It is difficult to accurately assess how deep flood waters run, especially in the dark. As little as six inches of water can knock a person down, and two feet of water can sweep away a vehicle.
Don’t push ahead when facing a flooded area. Whether walking or driving, the most important thing to remember is, “Turn around, don’t drown.”
© Apartment Prepper 2015