Living in Florida, you are exposed to a variety of potential natural disasters and other weather elements. One issue that isn’t exclusive to Florida but is certainly a problem for state residents is flooding. As you probably know, flooding is when water overflows into a home, street, or some other dry land.
Flooding isn’t exclusively a Florida issue, but it is more important to be prepared for flooding in states so close to the ocean. During hurricane season, flooding is even more dangerous and capable of striking your home. Still, daily items, like a drain or pipe, can cause flooding too.
Here are some ways to prepare for a flood, both in advance and when a flood warning has been issued.
How to Prepare in Advance for Floods in the Pensacola Area
Know Your Flood Risk
The first way to prepare for a flood is to know your flood risk. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has created flood maps that can help you know if you live in a high-risk, moderate-risk, or undetermined-risk location. Coastal Florida typically ranks high-risk since it is right on the ocean.
If you live in a high-risk area, it is a smart decision to keep an evacuation bag, building materials, and first aid materials in an easy to reach location in the case of an emergency.
Plan an Evacuation Route
Create an evacuation route for you and your family. Go a step further and plan multiple evacuation routes in case your first route is indisposed. Know where you’ll go, how you will evacuate, meaning vehicle arrangements, and who will be with you.
Once you know your evacuation route, communicate it with your family members. If you have children or anyone else evacuating with you, make sure they are aware of everything they will need to do during the evacuation process. It may be helpful to have practice evacuations. These practices will help you and your family know what to do in case of an emergency.
Something else you may want to do is prepare your evacuation bag. Include any prescriptions, important documentation, and personal needs. Place these items in a convenient and easy to grab location so you can grab them on the go.
Get Flood Insurance
Unfortunately, you can’t take your home with you. For that reason, you need to protect your home by getting flood insurance. Most homeowner insurance policies do not cover flood losses. This requires you to buy a separate flood insurance.
Install a Sump Pump
Some pumps are designed to keep flooding to a minimum in your basement. There are a variety of sump pumps to choose from. Each kind will have a sensor, normally a float switch, that gets activated once the water reaches a certain level within the pump basin. When activated, the sump pump starts pumping water out of your home and into a safer location.
Select a sump pump based on your expected needs. For example, some sump pumps will be less powerful than others. Those in the mountains will need a less powerful sump pump than those situated below sea level.
Elevate Certain Home Systems
Make sure your home is designed so that important features are not easily flooded. This includes placing your heating system, water heaters, electrical panels, and any other important, pricey, or electrical appliance high off the ground.
Though elevating your home systems won’t guarantee them from flooding, it will help in the case of minor flooding caused from a leak or broken pipe.
What to do if a Flood Warning has Been Issued
Know the Warnings
You need to know what kind of a warning has been issued. There will be 4 different types of warnings to lookout for:
- Flood Watch: A flood watch means that flooding in your area may occur. Be prepared just in case.
- Flood Warning:A flood warning means that a flood has already occurred or is occurring now. Evacuate as advised.
- Flash Flood Watch: A flash flood watch simply tells you that a flash flood may happen in your area. Monitor the issue carefully.
- Flash Flood Warning:A flash flood warning means that a flash flood is occurring, and you should seek higher ground.
Know what these warnings mean so you can act appropriately when they occur.
Prepare Your Home
In the case that a flood or flash flood warning have been issued, you need to prepare your home if you have time. This includes getting your family members, pets, and any valuable items and evacuating if necessary. As for everything you are leaving behind, move any valuable items to a higher floor if able. Make sure to turn off gas, water, and electricity, and put sandbags around the home.
Most times, evacuation will not be necessary in the case of a flood. For example, a pipe may leak. That is no need to evacuate and leave the state. In that case, you still need to prepare the home, albeit in a different way. Make sure all valuables are away from the area of the leak so that they don’t get water damage too. You may also need to turn off the power so that no one gets electrocuted.
Most importantly, you need to take precautions for your personal safety. Make sure to stay away from water if there are any open currents. You do not want to get electrocuted.
Also, evacuate if authorities advise you to. When you evacuate, make sure you have all your people, prescriptions, papers, personal needs, and priceless items along with you.
What to do About Flood Damage
If a flood has damaged your home, you will need to seek professional flood damage repair and flood damage restoration. These professional services will adequately remove standing water, dry your home, and make any restorations as needed. Water damage in Niceville and water damage restoration Miramar FL can help you out with any restoration needs in Florida.
For a water damage restoration company available 24/7, contact MasterPro Restoration. MasterPro will quickly and efficiently restore your home so that you can live in it safely again.