Flood Preparedness

A flood preparedness plan is something that all families should have in place. Like many natural disasters, modern meteorology assists in predicting possible threats in the short term; however, flood conditions are known to arise quickly and unexpectedly, causing severe property damage and other serious issues for those who are not prepared to take action.

Flood Preparedness for Your Home and Family

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While floods can be predicted on a short-term level, it is best to have your flood preparations in place long before you actually need them. Numerous important components are involved in a solid flood preparedness plan, and each one is crucial to protecting your home and your loved ones.


Flooding has the potential to cause not only serious damage to your home and belongings but can also easily be a catalyst for injury and illness. When preparing your family for potential flooding issues, purchases of insurance are definitely something that you will want to consider.

Flood Insurances

Severe flooding is known to cause devastating damage and even destruction to homes and property in its path. High waters can literally cause your home to break down and will easily destroy any material objects held within it. In the face of a flood, it is unlikely that you will have time or a method of removing your belongings to a safe place, which is why having flood insurance is important as a part of your flood preparedness plan.

Contact your insurance company or agent to add flood insurance to your homeowners or renters insurance policy. Doing so will ensure that, in the event that you lose your home or incur damage due to flooding, funds will be made available to you to help recover your losses. Several different kinds of flood policies are available that will cover not only structural damage and rebuilding but also any material belongings that become damaged as well. Talk to your provider about the different policies and choose the one that best meets your family's flood preparedness needs.

Medical Insurances

While most people are concerned about property damage in the event of flooding, it is also important to remember that injury and illness can also occur. Standing water is a breeding ground for bacteria and it is possible to become ill due to extended water exposure. Injury is also likely, especially during flash floods when high water puts you in contact with quickly moving debris. It is for this reason that, as you prepare for flood conditions, you make sure that you have medical insurance in place for your family, so that you can receive proper care if the need arises.

Protecting Your Valuables

Although many of your material belongings such as furniture and clothing can be replaced, certain possessions are essentially lost forever if they suffer water damage, so it is important that you take precautions to protect them during your flood preparedness stage. Important documents, money, birth certificates, passports and financial information as well as family heirlooms, including photographs and jewelry, are best protected when stored in waterproof bags inside of airtight containers.

In case of a flood, store the containers on the highest level of your home or in a safe place outside of your home, such as a bank safety deposit box.

Flood Kits

In the event of a flooding disaster, things will likely be too hectic for you to find everything you will need quickly if it becomes necessary to move to a shelter. It is wise to have a flood preparedness kit stored away for each member of your family. Individual objects in your kits should be stored in large ziptop bags to keep them dry and prevent damage during evacuation. Things you will want to include in your flood kits include:

  • First aid kit with bandages, gauze and antibiotic cream
  • A week's worth of necessary medications for each family member
  • An extra set of keys for your car and home
  • Several changes of clothes
  • Rubber waterproof boots
  • Toiletries including washcloth, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, deodorant and feminine hygiene supplies
  • Glasses or contact lenses for family members who need them
  • Necessary medical supplies, such as inhalers, nebulizers, diabetes equipment, etc.
  • Pet care supplies, if applicable
  • Several bottles of water for each person
  • A flashlight with extra set of batteries
  • Cellphone with an extra charged battery and phone charger
  • Items to keep your children occupied in the shelter, including books, coloring books, playing cards, small games or electronic music or entertainment devices
  • Emergency radio

Remember to secure the bags in your flood preparedness kit inside for extra security. Try not to pack any items that you will not need as heavy bags will make it harder for you and your children to travel easily.

Severe floods can happen anywhere at any time of year, so it is best to have your flood preparedness plan and kits ready far in advance, so that you do not panic if this situation arises. While most flooding is minor and localized, severe flooding can easily happen and is potentially life-threatening, so having a plan to protect your home and get your family out of harm's way is essential. Speak with your local government officials to find out what the flood risks are for your area as well as to benefit from any additional flood preparedness information and tips they may have to offer you.

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