Flooding can cause massive damage to your home and property, and there isn’t a whole that can be done to mitigate those costs if you haven’t prepared. If you live in a flood-prone region, it’s crucial to make a plan now to protect your family and pets in case bad weather strikes.
MAKE A PLAN
Come up with some kind of plan in the event of a flood. If your home is in danger from being flooded, make sure you know what you will do with your pets and how your family will get out safely. Evaluate the area around your home and choose routes accordingly. Make sure you avoid standing water if at all possible, as the risks of disease from pathogens and toxins are of huge concern.
As a part of your plan, you will want to move furniture, valuables, and important documents to a safe place. Copies of critical documents like birth certificates or insurance policies should be stored in a waterproof safety box and this should be done before evacuation, and ONLY if you have time.
Make sure you take into consideration your personal situation (ages and abilities of family members), geographic location, and budget before making your plan. All of those differences can play into how you choose to keep your family safe.
BUG OUT BAG
It’s crucial that you have a bag in which you can grab in a hurry on your way out of the house. This kit should include (at the very bare minimum) three days’ worth of water (one gallon per person per day) and food, along with flashlights, medications, copies of personal documents, cellphone chargers, and a first aid kit. If you want to avoid a public shelter, consider having a tent and some sleeping bags so you can camp out away from others.
Because a lot of water is difficult to carry especially for those with larger families, a Life Straw could be worth its weight in gold. If you have to leave quickly and use Mother Nature’s water sources, a Life Straw will make sure the water is completely filtered.
PROTECT YOUR HOME
After your emergency plan is established or as part of it, you can do a few things to protect your home and reduce the cost of damages. If you have a fuel tank in your basement, be sure to anchor it. An unanchored fuel tank can cause serious damage, such as tearing the supply line and spilling oil. If you live in an area in which a flood is likely, consider waterproofing your basement. This typically requires a large sum of money, so keep that in mind.
If you live in an area that is likely to be flooded, you probably already have flood insurance, but if you don’t, consider buying it if your budget will allow. Regular homeowner’s insuranceDOES NOT cover flood damage costs. Talk to your insurance company and find out what could work for you.
Following even a few of these steps can help you reduce your financial burden and keep your family safe in the event of a flood.