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A recent documentary by the National Geographic Society rates flooding as the greatest natural danger to Americans. The devastation caused by recent storms will be felt for years to come even though there is calmer weather. If you live in a risk area, it is important to have an idea of what to do if it floods.

Your immediate actions, more than those of the authorities, determine whether your family will come through the floods safely. To be on the safe side here are some things to do:

  1. Stay Informed

In most situations floods are forecasted and from that point you need to stay informed about the unfolding situation. Constant reports will be given either through official channels or news feeds. It is important to call friends and family to get any further details they have about the storm in order to know the course of action you must take.

  1. Check if the Sump Pump is Working

One of the greatest concerns during flooding is basement leakage. This normally occurs when the sump pump fails and it is thus important to check whether it is running efficiently before the storm gets worse.

  1. Gather Essentials

Items such as books and other essentials can be saved by taking them upstairs before the floods worsen. Alternatively, you can collect such items and place them on top of tables or other higher surfaces.

  1. Turn off Electrical Appliances

If the emergency forecast warns people to leave for higher ground, you need to switch off all electrical appliances. The gas and heating system should also be turned off to avoid the risk of fires.

  1. Get Ready to Leave the House

Depending on the flood forecast you need to leave for higher ground. If you are in a story building, you can move to the attic or higher floors. If this is not an option, prepare an emergency kit quickly and organize the family in order to leave for higher ground or designated emergency centers.

You should always have this kit ready and it should also contain a flashlight, battery powered radio, toiletries, medication and first aid supplies. It is also important to plug basement sewer drains as well as toilet connections with a stopper made from wood to avoid sewage back flow. As you leave, make sure you avoid flood water lest you be swept away.

It is also important to avoid electrical sources and crossing bridges. Once the flood subsides, wait for official communication to be allowed to get back to the house. While floods are unforeseeable, it is important to stay forewarned.

Using a professional contractor to waterproof your basement is one way of protecting your family and property before it starts flooding.

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