Flood Preparedness: Flash Flood Safety
Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. While flooding can cause significant property damage, flash floods can form in seconds and be particularly dangerous. If a flood is likely in your area, be aware that flash flooding is possible and that you should take extra precaution. Learn how you can stay safe and reduce your flash flood risks by using the following information from the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA):
Flash Flood Safety
Be aware that flash flooding is very dangerous and can move quickly. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
Be aware of streams, drainage channels, canyons and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.
Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground if you can do so safely. You and the vehicle can be swept away quickly. In fact, two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles including sport utility vehicles (SUV’s) and pick-ups.
Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams, rivers or creeks, particularly during threatening conditions.
Flash Flood Watches and Warnings
Flash Flood Watch
Flash flooding is possible. Be prepared to move to higher ground; listen to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio or television for information.
Flash Flood Warning
A flash flood is occurring; seek higher ground on foot immediately.
© 2012 Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety