Remember Hurricane Katrina? The horror, the lives lost, thousands of people who had their properties ripped from them, their families taken from and left with nothing but the fear and the pain the floods swamp it was in their lives, Painful memories!
Floods are natural disasters that can happen anywhere in the world. With the kind of impact climate change has everywhere, one can never be too safe. With floods, human lives and properties are prone to destruction. Severe damages to the environment shatter a country or town into tiny indispensable pieces.
Floods can happen due to heavy rainfall, ice jams, rapid melting of snow packs or the failure of natural or human-made dams sometimes. All which result in water damage leading to floods. Life would have turned out differently for the victims if someone had guided them on how to be prepared for floods and water damage restoration.
How to prepare for floods
Floods will both kill and sicken people, cause billion dollar property and infrastructure damage, impede transport or any services for weeks. How does anyone get ready for all that and become self-aware that it could happen to them?
Understand the nature of floods
Everyone should first aim to understand what exactly it is that they would be dealing with in case of floods. Waves come in all sizes, shapes, and timetables. Meteorologists can predict sometimes, and other times they just come unannounced.
Some floods are referred to as slow-onset floods because they slowly build multi-day rainfall and persists for weeks or months. There are also rapid-onset floods which rise and fall more quickly. Some places are prone to flooding because of pancake-flat basins. Floods also stem from the failure of artificial infrastructure like breached dams, bust pipes and breached levees.
Understand flood risks
It is important for people to know just how dangerous high water tends to be. Floodwaters are powerful enough to knock you off your feet and send cars sprawling in the air. In places where there is electricity, there is a high risk of electrocution. If it is possible to avoid flood waters, by all means, people should do so.
Prepare the house for floods
If people are aware that they live in places prone to floods, they should take measures to protect their homes. They should waterproof basement first then install a back-up battery-powered sump pump. They should also elevate electrical systems and appliances at least 12 inches above flood level projected by the forecast. They should secure fuel tanks too.
Put together a flood file
Copies of their insurance and inventory of major possessions, such as serial numbers and receipts for appliances and keep them in a personal flood file in a waterproof container.
Develop a flood action plan
If they are aware of future floods, it would be wise if they evacuate ahead of that time. Identifying evacuation routes and make sure that everyone in their house has emergency numbers programmed in their phones as well as identifying the region for emergency point of contact.
Pay attention to the meteorologists
Meteorologists give flood warnings in conditions where floods are expected. People should always keep tabs on the alerts provided by meteorologists who monitor current and predicted river levels. In case evacuation orders are given, they should adhere to them and seek safe, high ground.
Practice drills with the family or co-workers
People who are aware they live in an area prone to water damage should know where the shut-off utility switches are, and time themselves on how fast they would get to a safe location from the house or place of work.
How to survive a flood
1. Don’t get caught
The best way the victims of previous floods could have survived is if they were not caught in one. If people know their risks or their weather conditions, they should find ways to flee to high ground before the floods come. They should make backup plans to protect them from any risks that can be incurred.
2. Don’t get into the water.
They should go to higher grounds right away instead of waiting for things to get worse. If they have back up plans, they should just leave with their loved ones instead of staying to pack up their stuff. In areas where evacuation orders are given, they should evacuate.
Those who drive in the floods should abandon their cars and turn around to find safer routes. They should stay put and find somewhere safe to stay until it is safe to drive. Whether on foot, or driving, people should always stay away from the water.
3. What people should do if they end up in the water anyway?
When people get caught in the flood, they panic first. They should not panic and instead believe they can survive it. Those who are on foot should grab a stick to go through the water. The sticks should help them poke ahead of the debris, rocks, and holes.
In floods, snakes and other critters are also displaced, and they go through the distress as well so people should watch out for them. The sticks should help them with that as well. They should look for still water. They are more likely to survive in still water than moving water.
They should find a nook and stay, even if it small, they can hunker down and wait it out. People who get caught in the water despite their best options should go over obstacles, not under to avoid going under the water.
Those who manage to get out of the floodwater and end up in trees or on rocks should stay there and wait for rescue. People should try to stay calm and do what the rescue team tells them. By keeping it together at a time like that enables the rescuers to get them out safe.
When water is still, the ideal principle would be to get out of the car and go to higher ground immediately. It is important to get out of the water no matter what. Those who get submerged should try to climb out through the window,orclimb up to the top and find a safe place to go.
Those who try and can’t seem to get out should just keep calm and wait for the car to fill with water, then open the door and swim up to the surface. Once they are out, their survival instinct should be not to get caught by flooding in any way.
Flood could mean the end of your life and that’s why you need to be ready especially if you live a flood-prone area. This is not the same as fighting and addiction or clicking here to find out how you can detox, this is always a matter of life and death.