This week was Flood Safety Awareness Week. Earlier this week we shared tips for preparing for flood season, but now we want to remind you of best practices once a flood occurs.
The most important things to remember is to NEVER drive through active flood waters – six inches of water can drastically affect how much control you have of your vehicle. Plus, you never really know how deep the water is, so you’re taking a huge gamble with your life.
Use clean water for everything. It may seem like common sense, but do not use flood water for any food preparation, cleaning, or especially drinking. This is where you use your emergency kit that you’ve prepared. Also, pay attention to boil orders and notifications before trusting tap water after floods.
Power your home safely. Make sure generators are 20 feet from doors, windows, or vents to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Pay attention to power cords near water – again, it may seem like common sense, but during disasters it is easy to forget the most basic things.
Clear debris. Wearing work gloves, throw anything away that was touched by flood water. The water is riddled with dangerous bacteria, and it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Any wet insulation, carpeting, or porous surfaces will need to be replaced. Make sure to take plenty of pictures, and contact your insurance agent as soon as you can.
Know how to clean safely. Again, wearing gloves, clean any walls, counters, or surfaces that don’t need to be replaced with a bleach solution (one cup bleach to five gallons water) and soap and clean water.
We hope you don’t have to use any of this information this spring, but it is always smart to be prepared for temperamental Missouri weather. If you are concerned about your flood insurance, please call us now – before a problem arises.