Hurricane Ida - Flooding Safety Tips
September 1, 2021

The National Weather Service has issued a FLASH FLOOD WATCH for our area from 2PM today until tomorrow afternoon.

Heavy rainfall associated with Ida is expected with rainfall totals of 3 to 6 inches which will result in flash flooding, especially in urban, low lying and poor drainage areas. Some rivers may overflow their banks and lead to additional flooding.

What To Do Before, During, and After a Flood

Even if you feel you live in an area with a low risk of flooding, remember that anywhere it rains, it can flood. Just because you haven't experienced a flood in the past, doesn't mean you won't in the future. Flood risk isn't just based on history; it's also based on a number of factors including rainfall , topography, flood-control measures, river-flow and tidal-surge data, and changes due to new construction and development.

To prepare for a flood, you should:

* Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
* If feasible, construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering the building and seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds.

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 stream, drainage channels, canyons and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.

If you must prepare to evacuate, you should do the following:

* Secure your home. If you have time, bring in outdoor furniture. Move essential items to an upper floor.
* Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed to do so. Disconnect electrical appliances. Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.

Although floodwaters may be down in some areas, many dangers still exist. Here are some things to remember in the days ahead:

* Avoid moving water.
* Stay away from damaged areas unless your assistance has been specifically requested by police, fire, or relief organization.
* Emergency workers will be assisting people in flooded areas. You can help them by staying off the roads and out of the way.
* Play it safe. Additional flooding or flash floods can occur. Listen for local warnings and information. If your car stalls in rapidly rising waters, get out immediately and climb to higher ground.
* Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.
* Roads may still be closed because they have been damaged or are covered by water. Barricades have been placed for your protection. If you come upon a barricade or a flooded road, go another way.
* If you must walk or drive in areas that have been flooded stay on firm ground. Moving water only 6 inches deep can sweep you off your feet.
* Remember, standing water may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
* Flooding may have caused familiar places to change. Floodwaters often erode roads and walkways. Flood debris may hide animals and broken bottles, and it's also slippery. Avoid walking or driving through it.
* Be aware of areas where floodwaters have receded. Roads may have weakened and could collapse under the weight of a car.
* Stay out of any building if it is surrounded by floodwaters.
* Use extreme caution when entering buildings; there may be hidden damage, particularly in foundations.

If you have any issues remember your Pleasant Valley Fire District is available and ready to assist when needed.