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How can we better prepare our homes for flooding?

A reader asks Tess how to get more prepared for floods.

Dear Tess,

With all the flooding that is going on in the U.S., do you have any tips on how to prepare our homes?


Edna Short


Your question has impeccable timing.  Not only are families struggling to make ends meet, now they could be displaced due to the flood plains.  90% of the damage related to all natural disasters (excluding droughts) is caused by floods and debris flows.  There are some protective measures that you can take to prepare your home before a flood threatens.

To prepare for a flood, you should:

  • Avoid building in a flood plain unless you elevate and reinforce your home.
  • Elevate the furnace, water heater, and electric panel if susceptible to flooding.
  • Install “check valves” in sewer traps to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your home.
  • Construct barriers (levees, beams, flood walls) to stop floodwater from entering the building.
  • Seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds to avoid seepage.
  • Have a disaster plan in place and store disaster supplies in a cool, dry spot away from any possible flood areas.

If a flood is likely in your area, you should:

  • Listen to the radio or television for information.
  • Be aware that flash flooding can occur. 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 such typical warnings as rain clouds or heavy rain.
  •  Do not hide in the basement.  If a flash flooding occurs, basements can quickly become death traps.

You can read more on this disaster concern here.  I hope this helps.

Thanks again for your question.


This article was originally published at Ready Nutrition™ on May 29th, 2013

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