Flood Safety Tips

Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. Conditions that cause floods include heavy or steady rain for several hours or days that saturates the ground. Flash floods occur suddenly due to rapidly rising water along a stream or low-lying area.

Flash Flood Watch means that flash flooding is possible in or near the watch area. A Flash Flood Warning means that flooding is occurring in the area or will be very soon.

Safety Tips

  • If you live in a low-lying area or near a river, stream or dam, be prepared to evacuate quickly. If not, rapidly rising flood waters could leave you trapped.
  • Do not drive or walk through standing or running water or drive around barricades. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off your feet and most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Head to higher ground if a flash flood warning is issued for your area
  • If you live or work in a flood-prone area, be prepared to evacuate quickly and consider gathering emergency supplies, such as:
    • three-day supply of nonperishable food and water
    • flashlight
    • seven-day supply of medications
    • copies of personal documents (for example: insurance policies, birth certificates, deeds)
    • cell phone with charger
    • tools for securing your home
    • insect repellent and sunscreen
    • extra sets of car and house keys
    • camera to shoot photos of damage to your property


Original Source: ISU Environmental Health and Safety