Tips for Flood Preparedness

February 20, 2019

flood rain

Tennessee is no stranger to rain. Flooding is one of the most common and costliest weather disasters in the U.S., according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, so it’s important to be ready if flooding should happen in your area.

Here are five tips to help stay prepared:

1) Know your flood zones. Check the flood zone maps provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to see if you’re home is located in an area prone to flooding.

2) Maintain your sump pump. A sump pump’s purpose is to remove excess water from the ground away from your home so your basement or crawlspace stays dry. You should also have a backup generator in case you lose electricity, which should be installed by a licensed electrician.

3) Prepare your property. Regularly clean your gutters, clear debris from nearby storm drains, and inspect your roof and drainage systems.

4) Store valuables in an elevated spot. Important items such as paperwork, family photo albums, insurance policies, household inventories, and medicines should be stored in an elevated, dry place and ready to take with you should you need to evacuate your home.

5) Have an emergency evacuation plan in place for your family. Plan and practice an evacuation route with your family, which includes the best routes to exit your home and drive out of a flood zone. When navigating a flood zone, the rule of thumb is always "turn around, don't drown" if you encounter rushing water. Always pursue higher ground and never walk in water that is more than six inches deep or drive in water that is more than a foot deep.

You should also have an emergency communication plan in place if your family were to become separated. Choose a relative or friend to serve as your “family contact” in the event of an emergency and teach your children that person’s phone number.

For more information about flood preparation, visit the National Weather Service Flood Safety Tips and Resources Website.

 

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