floor of house flooded by water

Floods are the most common disaster in the United States and can cause outages, destroy property, disrupt transportation, or create landslides. It’s important to know if your home is vulnerable to flooding and how to prepare.  

How can I prepare for a flood?  

How can I stay safe during a flood?  

  • Evacuate immediately (if told to evacuate) and never drive around barriers.  
  • Contact your healthcare provider, if you are sick and need medical attention.  
  • Listen to emergency alerts 
  • Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown! 
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water and stay inside your car if it is trapped in rapidly moving water. Get on the roof if water is rising inside the car. 
  • Get to the highest level if trapped in a building.  

How can I stay safe after a flood?  

  • Pay attention to authorities for information and instructions. Return home only when authorities say it is safe. 
  • Avoid driving except in emergencies and avoid wading in floodwater.  
  • Wear heavy work gloves, protective clothing and boots during clean up and use appropriate face coverings or masks if cleaning mold or other debris.  
  • People with asthma and other lung conditions and/or immune suppression should not enter buildings with indoor water leaks or mold growth that can be seen or smelled. Children should not take part in disaster cleanup work. 
  • Be aware that snakes and other animals may be in your house and be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water.  
  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows. 

SOURCE: Ready.gov and Ready NC  

Last updated 3/1/2023

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