The Disaster Cycle Services team is currently monitoring imminent flood threats to parts of our region.  Please review these tips to prepare your family for potential flooding.  The safety of our volunteers and staff are important to the mission.  We want to ensure your household has all the tools needed to prepare as needed.

Flooding occurs as a result of rain, snow, costal storms, storm surges, overflows of rivers, and dam failures.  Floods can be dangerous, and people die by drowning when they don’t evacuate before floodwaters come or when they enter floodwaters.  Floods can damage buildings and roads, cause power outages, and create landslides.  Flood waters carry waste and pollute drinking water.  This can develop slowly or quickly which is why it’s important to take necessary action for your family/household.

Prepare now to protect yourself and loved ones.


  • Understand your flood risk.  Educate yourself on different types of flooding that can impact your home and community.  Types of flooding: flash floods, river floods, storm surges, coastal floods, burns scars, debris flows, ice/debris jams, snowmelt, dry wash, dam breaks, and levee failures
  • Contact your local office of emergency management for advice
  • Know your home and community’s flood risk.  Visit the FEMA Flood Map Service Center and search for your home using your address
  • River floods: Know if you are in an area that is prone to river floods.  Review your evacuation plan so that you can leave quickly if officials advise you to evacuate
  • Storm surge: Be prepared to evacuate immediately if local officials advise.  A storm surge can case water levels to rise quickly and flood large areas in just minutes
  • Coastal flooding: Be prepared to evacuate immediately if local officials advise.  Move inland before flooding begins.
  • Make plans to stay safe!  Flash floods can be sudden and violent.  Sometimes you may have little to no warning.  Designate a place on higher ground that you can get to quickly.  Plan to move to higher ground before flooding begins.



  • Never walk, swim, or drive through floodwater.  Just 6 inches (15 cm) of fast-moving floodwater can knock you over, and 12 in (30 cm) can carry your vehicle away


Prevent Injuries

  • Understand the dangers you may face and keep your loved ones safe
  • If you evacuated, wait for officials to say it is safe before going home
  • Avoid fallen power lines, poles, and wires.  They can electrocute you
  • Watch out for falling trees and other debris
  • Use flashlights or battery-powered lanterns, rather than candles, to reduce fire risk
  • Many injuries occur during cleanup.  Wear protective equipment, or PPE, like boots, long pants, work gloves, eyewear, and an N95 respirator to protect your lungs.  Follow the advice of local public health officials
  • Learn how to use equipment safely.  Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water because you could get electrocuted.
  • Cleaning up is a big job.  Take care of yourself.  Work with a partner and take frequent breaks.
  • If your home was flooded:
    • If possible, dry your home and everything in it as quickly as you can within 24-48 hours.
    • If you cannot return to dry your home within 24-48 hours, you should assume mold growth and make sure you don’t still have a moisture problem
  • Keep wet areas well-ventilated.  Throw away wet materials that can’t be repaired or dried
  • Precent carbon monoxide poisoning.  Gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal-burning devices should never be used inside a home, basement, garage, tent, or camper- or event outside near an open window.  Carbon monoxide can’t be seen or smelled, but it can kill you fast.  If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak, get to fresh air right away- do not delay.

Protect Your Health

  • Flooding can contaminate drinking water.  Check with your local public health department about drinking water safety.
  • Don’t get sick from eating spoiled food.  Throw out food that got wet or warm.  When in doubt, throw it out!
  • Stay away from floodwaters.  They may contain sewage, sharp items, and chemicals that can make you ill.

Take Care of Yourself

  • It’s normal to have a lot of bad feelings, stress, or anxiety
  • Eat healthy food and get enough sleep t help you deal with stress
  • You can contact the Disaster Distress Helpline for FREE if you need to talk to someone.  Call or text 1-900-985-5990

For more info, visit and download the Emergency App on iOS or Google Play