Register to receive emergency 
alerts instantly on your cell phone.
Click here to register
Plan & Prepare › Floods
 - Information provided by Ready.gov
  
Flooding is the nation's most common natural disaster. Flooding can happen in every U.S. state and territory. However, all floods are not alike. Some can develop slowly during an extended period of rain. Others, such as flash floods, can occur quickly, even without any visible signs of rain. It’s important to be prepared for flooding no matter where you live, but particularly if you are in a low-lying area, near water or downstream from a dam. Even a very small stream or dry creek bed can overflow and create flooding.
Step 1: Get A Kit
  
Get an Emergency Supply Kit, which includes items like non-perishable food, water, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, extra flashlights and batteries. You may want to prepare a portable kit and keep it in your car. This kit should include:
+ Copies of prescription medications and medical supplies;
+ Bedding and clothing, including sleeping bags and pillows;
+ Bottled water, a battery-operated radio and extra batteries, a first aid kit, a flashlight;
+ Copies of important documents: driver’s license, Social Security card, proof of residence, insurance policies, wills, deeds, birth and marriage certificates, tax records, etc.
Step 2: Make a Plan
  
Prepare your family
+ Make a Family Emergency Plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency.
+ Plan places where your family will meet, both within and outside of your immediate neighborhood.
+ It may be easier to make a long-distance phone call than to call across town, so an out-of-town contact may be in a better position to communicate among separated family members.
+ You may also want to inquire about emergency plans at places where your family spends time: work, daycare and school. If no plans exist, consider volunteering to help create one.
Be sure to consider the specific needs of your family members
  • Notify caregivers and babysitters about your plan.
  • Make plans for your pets
+ Take a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) class. Keep your training current.
Step 3: Be Informed
  
Familiarize yourself with the terms that are used to identify a flood hazard.
+ Flood Watch: Flooding is possible. Tune in to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information
+ 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.
+ Flood Warning: Flooding is occurring or will occur soon; if advised to evacuate, do so immediately.
+ Flash Flood Warning: A flash flood is occurring; seek higher ground on foot immediately.
   
Prepare Your Home
+ Find out if your home is at risk for flood and educate yourself on the impact a flood could have on you and your family. Then safeguard your home and possessions with flood insurance. Visit www.floodsmart.gov.
+ Elevate the furnace, water heater and electric panel in your home if you live in an area that has a high flood risk.
+ Consider installing "check valves" to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your home.
+ If feasible, construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering the building and seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds.
+ Property insurance does not typically cover flood damage. Talk to your insurance provider about your policy and consider if you need additional coverage.
   
Prepare Your Business
Plan to stay in business, talk to your employees, and protect your investment.
+ Carefully assess how your company functions, both internally and externally, to determine which staff, materials, procedures and equipment are absolutely necessary to keep the business operating.
+ Identify operations critical to survival and recovery.
+ Plan what you will do if your building, plant or store is not accessible.
  • Consider if you can run the business from a different location or from your home.
  • Develop relationships with other companies to use their facilities in case a disaster makes your location unusable.
+ Learn about programs, services, and resources at U.S. Small Business Administration.
   
Listen to Local Officials
Learn about the emergency plans that have been established in your area by local government. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
     
Additional Resources

Find additional information on how to plan and prepare for floods, what to do during and after a flood and learn about available resources by visiting the following:

SEARCH the SITE