Last updated on February 12, 2019 at 03:49 pm
One of the many reasons I love the East Coast is the varying weather. I get to experience all four seasons, but, unfortunately, that sometimes means I experience extreme weather too. While we can’t have control over the weather, we can absolutely control how we’re prepared to react to it. And with National Flood Awareness Week, there’s no better time than now to review tips and make sure you are prepared should flooding occur in your area.
Whether you own or rent your home, flood insurance should be considered in order to protect your assets. Plymouth Rock Assurance can help residents secure flood insurance policies through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Because there is usually a 30-day waiting period after flood insurance is purchased, the best time to buy is now.
Floods are among the most common and expensive natural disasters. They can occur slowly or within a few minutes. Floods can impact a single house or an entire community. Flooding alone caused more than $2 billion in damage in 2013 according to the National Weather Service.
What causes flooding?
Flooding is caused by heavy or steady rain for several hours or days that really saturates the ground. When the earth has soaked up as much water as it can, that’s when flooding begins. Flash foods occur very quickly because of rapidly rising water near a stream or other low-lying area.
A watch versus a warning.
Weather forecasters don’t use these terms without a reason. Here’s a breakdown of what they mean:
- Flood/Flash Flood Watch—Flooding or flash flooding is possible in your area.
- Flood/Flash Flood Warning—Flooding or flash flooding is already occurring or will occur soon in your area.
Be in the know.
The American Red Cross has a free Flood App, featuring step-by-step instructions on what to do if flooding occurs, even if cell towers and other communications are out of service. The app also enables users to locate Red Cross shelters and tips on what to pack in a family emergency kit.
Many places sell emergency kits but you can also make up your own kit. Make sure you have the following supplies packed and ready to go in case you need to evacuate:
- Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day
- Food—at least a 3-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
- Extra batteries
- First Aid kit
- Medications and medical items
- Copies of personal documents
- Cell phone with chargers
- Extra cash
- Emergency blanket
- Water, food and medications for your pets, if applicable
For more tips on flood preparedness, visit Ready.gov and share your tips in the comments below!
Click here for more information about insurance in your state.