Before a flood
Prepare yourself and your family for a flood by having a communication plan and emergency kit packed. Have enough water, food, medicine, and other basic supplies to last three days. Have enough batteries for a portable radio and chargers for electronic devices. Pack for pets if you have them.
During a flood
If a flash flood is imminent, move to higher ground as soon as possible. Stay off the road. As little as six inches of water can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles, and twelve inches of water will float most cars.
In flooded conditions be careful where you walk, using a stick to test the ground in front of you. Six inches of moving water can knock over an adult.
Don’t enter rooms where outlets or electrical cords are submerged as there is a possibility of being electrocuted.
After a flood
Avoid flood waters. They can contain toxins. Make sure water is safe before using it.
If you had to evacuate, don’t return home until authorities say it is safe.
Stay off of flooded roads and out of disaster areas.
Be cautious in buildings that were flooded since the flood might have damaged or weakened the foundation.
Online Water Safety Checklist (PDF)
Watch your kids
Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death for children under five. In 70% of cases where young children drowned, one or both parents were nearby. Avoid distractions like using cell phones or talking with other adults.
Supervise your kids even when lifeguards are on duty. Lifeguards watch many people and can’t focus only on children.
Maintain visual contact with your children while they’re in the water.
Wear a life jacket
Don’t rely on water wings or other inflatable devices. Choose a United States Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
Weak swimmers or non-swimmers can wear life jackets in lakes, swimming pools, and any body of water.
Children who wear life jackets still need adult supervision.
Learn to swim
Safety experts recommend kids learn to swim by age 4.
Learn about safety equipment and keep a shepherd’s hook near a pool for rescues.
Learn about recommendations for pool drains. Teach children not to play with drains.