What to Do When… There’s a Flash Flood

Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States, but not all floods occur in the same way. Some accumulate slowly after a long period of rainfall, while others develop in a matter of minutes. These unexpected, quickly forming waters are known as flash floods.

Besides bringing with them a dangerous wall of roaring water, flash floods also carry many hazardous materials, such as rocks and debris. With the potential dangers of a flash flood, it is important to be prepared.

First and foremost, stay informed on the situation. Keep up to date and know the difference between a flash flood watch and a flash flood warning.

Secondly, you will want to secure your home or business by moving important items to higher ground and making sure your business has a thorough business continuity and disaster recovery plan.

If you are evacuating, try to avoid flooded areas as much as possible. Six inches of water can knock a person off their feet and will reach the bottom of most vehicles. One foot will float many vehicles and two can carry them away.

When in doubt, play it safe. Flash floods present many dangers to our health, safety and
well-being. They pose threats not only to personal lives but to businesses as well. By staying informed and prepared, businesses can minimize the after-effects of the impending disaster.

For more detailed information on how to be ready for a flash flood visit www.ready.gov/floodawareness and www.readypa.org/potentialemergencies/floods/.

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