Floods are one of the few natural occurences that can really show just how powerful Mother Nature is.
One minute you have a lovely house by the river, the next minute all you have is a torrent of floodwater with debris rushing through and taking everything on its path with it. Floods are scary for sure. But they are also one of the catastrophes that we can easily avoid. Flood warnings and flood alerts are almost always available in flood prone areas. But without relying so much on the alerts and warnings, how can you be prepared for a flood?
In the case of flood preparedness, knowledge is power. Here are some things you have to do or know in order to prepare yourself for a flood.
1. Get to know whether your location is prone to flooding or not. This is a rather simple question you can ask neighbors who have been living in the area for some time or your local disaster management agency. This is not 100% fool proof though as some places that have had no experience of floods for years get swept by flash floods.
2. Design or prepare your house to weather a flood. In cases wherein you are in the direct path of a possible flood, just make sure your house can take the brunt of the waters. You must and will not be advised to stay in your homes during a flood but making sure you still have a house to come home to might be a priority for some. This means relocating all important stuff to the upper floors of your house. You might also want to do something with the electrical utilities located on the lower parts of the house.
3. Be aware of flood warnings or alerts. Keep a good eye on the local weather forecast for any updates. Remember that once a flood warning is raised, you must move immediately. A flood has no timeline and can arrive anytime.
4. Know the evacuation areas. As what I have mentioned above, a flood has no timeline so you really can’t afford to do your research when a flood alert is already raised.
5. Keep a cache complete with food, water, extra clothes, extra cash, important documents, flashlights, batteries, and a battery operated radio. You will need all these things in case you have to go to a shelter.
What to Do During a Flood.
1. Don’t ever think you can take on a flood. Just move away from the flood for your own safety. Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
2. Just because the flood is not that deep does not mean it won’t hurt you. It just takes 6 inches of rushing floodwater to knock you down and only 2 feet of water to sweep your vehicle.
3. If by any chance you were caught by a flood while inside your car, vacate your car immediately and run for higher ground.
4. If you have successfully evacuated, wait for the authorities to give the go-signal before going back to your homes.