Sometimes, Mother Nature is more excessive than we would like her to be. Case and point: natural-disaster damage to your property. All it takes is a few inches of water to cause major damage to your home and its contents. Knowing your flood risk and being prepared can help keep your family safe and reduce potential damages.
With a combination of soaking rain, flying debris, high winds, and tidal surges, hurricanes and tropical storms can pack a powerful punch. Besides causing extensive damage in coastal areas, hurricanes and tropical storms often bring flooding hundreds of miles inland, placing communities that normally would not be affected by the strongest hurricane winds in great danger. Just a few inches of water from a flood can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage.
Many areas of the country are at heightened risk for flooding due to heavy rains. This excessive amount of rainfall can happen anytime throughout the year, putting your property at risk.
Storms over the Pacific Ocean bring heavy rains to the western United States between the months of November and April. Spring rains in colder climates can lead to flooding when the still-frozen ground cannot absorb the water. And summer months often bring heavy rains to the eastern and southern United States as warm air and moisture from the ocean move inland.
Cresting rivers, backed-up storm drains or saturated ground can cause significant, widespread floods during these times.
In the United States, floods are the most common severe weather emergency. They can roll boulders, tear out trees and destroy buildings and bridges. A flash flood is a rapid flooding of low-lying areas in less than six hours, which is caused by intense rainfall from a thunderstorm or several thunderstorms. Flash floods can also occur from the collapse of a man-made structure or ice dam.
Take an inventory of your belongings, make an emergency plan for you and your family, get flood insurance for your home (and business) and its contents.
Create a personal flood file containing information about all your possessions and keep it in a secure place.
Before the disaster make sure that your pets are current on their vaccinations. Pet shelters may require proof of vaccines.
Create a safety kit with drinking water, canned food, first aid, blankets, a radio, and a flashlight.
First make sure your sump pump is working and then install a battery-operated backup, in case of a power failure.