Anytime a major storm is approaching, time is of the essence to prepare. We all see the same thing on the news, images of first responders and volunteers constructing sandbag barriers to hold back a potential flood. But have you ever seen that and asked yourself if you know how to build a sandbag barrier? I’d wager that most people don’t, because by all appearances, building up a wall of sandbags is a very simple task. It’s physically demanding, but not complex at all, so most people probably assume that if they ever had to protect their home from a flood, working with sandbags would come naturally.
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However, just because a task is simple, that doesn’t mean that it lacks finer points. There is definitely a right way and a wrong way to build a sandbag barrier. If you’ve never been taught the right way, check out the following video. It was produced by Australia’s SES, a volunteer organization that provides emergency services during disasters. In a few short minutes, it explains all of the most basic and important tips you need to know to protect your home during a flood.
That tells you pretty much everything you need to know about using sandbags to hold back minor floods. However, if you think that a storm is going to produce a more serious flood, you may need to build a much more extensive barrier; perhaps something that will fully surround the perimeter of your home.
If that’s the case, you should check out this video from Canada, which also offers a more in-depth analysis on sandbag construction.
Of course, the best way to ensure that your home will be safe from flooding is to have the tools you need in place, long before the flooding starts. If a major storm system is moving in, then people are going rush to the stores to buy things like sandbags, so they’ll be in short supply during an emergency. You should buy plastic sheeting and sandbags ahead of time. And if you don’t think that you’ll have access to sand, there are several varieties of bags that don’t require it. They work by absorbing large quantities of water, which form a barrier that can hold back the rest of the water.