Did you know that Indiana has more than 60 rivers and creeks that wind their way across the state? That’s a lot of water! It’s also a big reason to plan ahead for a potential flood.
You don’t need to move to higher ground or build a house on stilts to protect your family and your property. The smartest thing you can do is prepare. Here’s how.
Understanding Flood Risks
According to the American Red Cross, floods are one of the most common and costliest types of natural disasters. In some cases, flooding begins to occur after several days of steady rain. Other times, it happens with little or no warning.
Be on the lookout and listen for these two weather alerts in your area:
- Flood/flash flood WATCH. Meteorologists use this term when flooding is possible in your community.
- Flood/flash flood WARNING. This means that flooding is already happening or is imminent in your community.
So, what do you do if weather experts interrupt your program with a severe weather alert?
Have a Flood Emergency Kit Ready
Prepare for a flood by having a disaster supply kit ready to go in an emergency. The following pieces of equipment are essential:
- Three days of food & water for each family member (don’t forget your pets!)
- First aid kit
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
- Wireless cell phone charger
- Sanitation & personal hygiene items
- Copies of personal documents
- Extra clothing & rain gear
- Maps of your area
- Make collecting equipment and items for your emergency kit a family affair. Be sure everyone at home knows where the kit it stored, and how to use each item. For more ideas and tips on emergency preparedness kits, visit Ready.gov.
Response During & After a Flood
In the worst-case scenario of a flood actually striking your community, do you know what to do? Consider these safety tips for during and after the disaster:
- Watch TV if possible, or use your emergency radio or cell phone for updates.
- Be prepared to evacuate your home at a moment’s notice.
- If a flood warning is issued for your area, get to higher ground immediately.
- Stay away from and never try to navigate floodwaters by foot or vehicle.
- Keep children away from the water.
- Don’t return home until officials have declared your area safe.
- Inspect your home’s exterior (power lines, foundation, etc.) before entering.
- Be on the lookout for stray and wild animals.
- If you smell or hear leaking gas, evacuate the area and call 911.
- Wear protective clothing during cleanup and dispose of food.
- If you notice flood damage in or around your home, contact Van Rooy Restoration in Indianapolis for rebuilding assistance.
If you are the victim of a flood, be sure to let family know that you are okay once you are able to do so. Remember that homeowner’s insurance does not cover flood damage, so consider a flood insurance policy. For more tips on how to recover from a flood or other disaster, visit the Red Cross website and Van Rooy Restoration for flood repairs.