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Flood Warning Preparation. How to Prepare for the Worst.

In light of the severe weather that has been occurring this year, it seems like a prudent idea to take a glance at the preventative steps necessary to protect your home, your property, and your family. When preparing for a flood, there several things you can equip yourself with in order to keep yourself forewarned and relatively prepared.

Flood watches and flood warnings.When you are reading the news, watching nightly local television, or locating weather reports online, you should be understanding exactly what you happen to be exposed to. There are many terms floating around and some of them do not quite mean what they sound like. “Flood watch” is indicative of a possible flood condition and you should be careful of actual flooding in your area. Watching local television or listening to radio should give you additional information as the authorities distribute that information. “Flash flood watch” is used when rapid floods are possible and it is smart to move yourself and loved ones to higher ground, in addition to securing your property as best you can. “Flood warning” means that flooding is happening in your area at that instant or may be eminent. It is advisable to pay attention to any evacuation orders from local sources. “Flash flood warning” is used when a flash flood is happening and you should probably be evacuating or moving to a safe location. Finally, “Urban and Small Stream Advisory” shows viewers or listeners that those exact areas, urban low laying areas and small streams, are being flooded and should be evacuated and prepared.

Besides being informed of the weather conditions in your area, there are a few other things you can do to prepare for flood damage. Be ready to shut off all of your home utilities – this means electricity and gas.  You should have the main shutoff valves clearly marked and the understanding of how to turn these utilities off when the situation requires it. You can prepare your home’s sewer system by installing backflow valves on all the traps in order to prevent excessive backflow through drains. You can also use corks or other types of stoppers as a last resort. If you have a basement, make sure that items you valve are properly stored high or moved away from the basement. If your property has any foundation drainage problems, a sump pump is a good investment as a precaution.

Check your personal property insurance as well, to make sure you are covered for flood damage – most regularly homeowners’ policies require a separate purchase for this coverage.  If your local community is supporting or a part of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), get signed up right away. You can check this by calling your local city hall or other local government authorities. Additional insurance costs money, but its worth becomes quite evident if you have to use your insurance policy. If this becomes the case, you should make sure that you have properly recorded most of your valuables for insurance adjusters to properly assess.

In the event of an actual flood in your area, make sure you have already planned out your evacuation routes, realizing that everyone else around you will also be moving out. Do be extremely aware of the limitations of your automobile in flooded areas – motor vehicles do not operate well in exposed areas of water, unless they are specifically designed for such environments.

All of these suggested steps are preventative and circumstances change on an individual basis. If you have water damage from a burst pipe, basement flooding or any other source, call Restoration Local 24/7 at 1-888-443-3110 for a free estimate! We will help you restore your property as fast as possible for the safety of you, your family, and your belongings.

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