Floods are one of the most common, and most costly, natural disasters. Preparing for flood situations can minimize injury to yourself and your family and speed recovery. If flooding should happen, knowing how to respond when your home, business, or farm is affected can also mitigate loss and injury.

  • Be prepared to evacuate quickly.
  • Prepare an emergency kit.
  • Do not drive or walk through standing or running water.
  • Do not drive around barricades.
  • Head to higher ground if a flash flood warning is issued for your area.
  • Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
  • Do not walk, swim, or drive into floodwater.
  • Be aware of possible structural damages.

Get the Help you Need


State and Federal Resources

  • Floods and Flash Floods

    Source: Ready Iowa

    Essential information on how to prepare for, respond to, and recover from floods. It covers identifying flood-prone areas, assembling emergency supplies, and developing evacuation plans.

  • Iowa Farm Service Agency

    Source: USDA Farm Service Agency

    Find your FSA county office in Iowa and information about programs that may be available to help you recover from flooding and severe weather.

  • Community Recovery Management Toolkit

    Source: FEMA

    The resources in this toolkit are geared toward helping community leaders through the long-term disaster recovery process and are intended to be useful at any phase of recovery.

  • Cómo Empezar su Recuperación Después de una Inundación

    Source: FEMA

    Recursos para ayudarlo a presentar un reclamo, documentar daños, trabajar con su ajustador, realizar reparaciones y comprender el pago de su reclamo.

  • Disaster Assistance Discovery Tool

    Source: United States Department of Agriculture

    The Disaster Assistance Discovery Tool uses your answers to five questions to identify USDA disaster assistance programs that might meet your business needs.

  • Low-Interest Disaster Loans

    Source: U.S. Small Business Administration

    SBA provides low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters.

  • Starting Your Recovery After a Flood

    Source: FEMA

    Resources to help you file a claim, document damage, work with your adjuster, make repairs, and understand your claim payment.


  • Iowa Beef Center Flood-Related Resources

    Source: Iowa State University

    Recent floods and excess water could mean changes to your grazing practices, feed supplies and management practices. Check out this list of resources from the Iowa Beef Center.

  • Cattle Producers Should be Mindful of Foot Rot Following Wet Conditions

    Source: Iowa State University

    Beyond the obvious and immediate challenges of excessive rainfall, wet weather may predispose livestock to a painful infection called foot rot. Foot rot is a bacterial infection of the foot ch

  • Dairy Cattle and Floods

    Source: Washington State University

    Create an emergency plan of action, considering such things as areas of high ground for animal relocation, temporary milking facilities, equipment relocation, and safe pesticide storage.

  • Flood Related Diseases in Poultry and Livestock

    Source: University of Florida

    Basic information on clostridial diseases such as blackleg and anthrax, malignant edema, tetanus, foot rot, mastitis, botulism, brooder pneumonia, and erysipelas.

  • Horse Care and Management Tips for Flooded Areas

    Source: Texas A&M

    Steps to be taken to ensure the safety of horses in pastures following heavy rainfall events.

  • Livestock Health After a Flood

    Source: University of Florida

    Considerations for pastureland, feed and water and disease control after flooding.

  • Wet Weather: Lameness and Mastitis

    Source: South Dakota State University

    Prevention and treatment information for two common ailments for dairy cattle during wet weather conditions are mastitis and lameness.


  • After the Flood: What to Do About Personal Items

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Sewage and chemicals found in flood waters may have contaminated your clothing, furniture, and bedding. Some items can be saved, while other items need to be thrown out.

  • Después de la Inundación: Qué Hacer con los Artículos Personales

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Las aguas residuales y los productos químicos que se encuentran en las aguas de inundaciones pueden haber contaminado su ropa, muebles y ropa de cama.

  • Directrices para la Limpieza de Hogares Inundados

    Source: Agencia de Protección Ambiental de Estados Unidos

    Guía y consejos para reingresar a su hogar de manera segura, qué puede por su cuenta para iniciar el proceso de reconstrucción y cómo protegerse de los peligros para su seguridad y la salud.

  • FAQs About Cleaning Flooded Basements

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Safety tips before entering a flooded basement, removing standing water and clean up.

  • FAQs About Mold

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Tips on finding and cleaning mold in your home.

  • Flood Cleanup to Protect Indoor Air and Your Health

    Source: United States Environmental Protection Agency

    The Environmental Protection Agency describes four important actions you should consider to protect your health and indoor air quality (IAQ) when cleaning up after a flood.

  • Flood Recovery Tips for the Home

    Source: Iowa State University

    Steps to ensure safety when removing water from flooded buildings and checking for structural damage.

  • Flooded Homes Cleanup Guidance

    Source: United States Environmental Protection Agency

    Guidance and tips to safely reenter your home, what you can do yourself to start the rebuilding process and protecting yourself from safety and health hazards.

  • Making Choices about Cleaning Wet Carpet

    Source: Iowa State University

    Even with your best efforts, wet carpet is difficult to clean.  If carpeting was flooded with basement seepage, with lawn runoff, or by sump pump failure, the risk may be less.

  • Preguntas Frecuentes Acerca de la Limpieza de Sótanos Inundados

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Consejos de seguridad antes de ingresar a un sótano inundado, eliminar el agua estancada y limpiar.

  • Preguntas Frecuentes Sobre el Moho

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Consejos para encontrar y limpiar moho en su hogar.


  • All-Hazards Preparedness for Rural Communities

    Source: The Center for Food Security and Public Health

    The booklet is divided into 4 sections: general preparedness measures, natural disasters hazards, biological emergencies, and manmade or technological threats.  Each section contains an overvi

  • Dealing With Flooding at Your Home

    Source: North Dakota State University

    Videos, publications, and other resources provide information about staying safe during a flood and how to begin to safely recover after a flood.

  • Dealing with Flooding on Your Farm or Ranch

    Source: North Dakota State University

    Resources for oil and fuel cleanup, flooded crops and soils, and livestock impacted by flooding.

  • First Steps to Flood Recovery

    Source: Iowa State University

    Covers topics such as mental health, pets and livestock, safety during recovery, food and water concerns, salvaging belongings, cleaning, insurance and other resources.


  • Flood Recovery Checklists for Farmsteads

    Source: North Dakota State University

    Includes flood recovery checklists for farm buildings, electrical equipment, fuel and oil spills, water systems, flooded or spilled pesticides and fertilizers, flooded grain bins, containment pond

  • Flooding and Your Family

    Source: North Dakota State University

    Guidance on managing various aspects of crisis preparedness and response.

  • Know DNR's Role in Disaster Response and Recovery

    Source: Iowa Department of Natural Resources

    Floods can occur in many areas of Iowa not just along small streams, rivers and lakes.

  • Preparación Para Todo Tipo de Peligros para las Comunidades Rurales

    Source: The Center for Food Security and Public Health

    El folleto está dividido en 4 secciones: medidas generales de preparación, peligros de desastres naturales, emergencias biológicas y amenazas tecnológicas o provocadas por el hombre.  Cada sec

  • Storm Recovery Guide

    Source: Iowa State University

    Topics include: staying healthy, power outages, restoring buildings, salvaging belongings, lawn and garden losses, and financial recovery

Finance and Insurance

  • Asistencia por desastre

    Source: La Agencia Federal de Pequeños Negocios

    La SBA ofrece préstamos de bajo interés por desastres para ayudar a las pequeñas empresas y propietarios de viviendas a recuperarse de los desastres declarados.

  • Avoid Scams Following Disasters

    Source: Iowa State University

    Be on the lookout for scams by fake government employees, bogus charities, dishonest contractors and others trying to take advantage of your situation.

  • Crop Insurance Coverage - Frequently Asked Questions

    Source: Iowa State University

    Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Farm Management Specialists provide expertise regarding crop insurance and adverse events.

  • Flood Damaged Crops, Crop Insurance Payments, and Lease Contracts

    Source: Iowa State University

    Details on crop insurance, potential losses and rental contracts.

  • Grants for Disasters

    Source: Center for Disaster Philosophy

    Grants prioritize investments in local organizations to support a range of programs critical for individuals’ and communities’ recovery.

  • IDALS Flooding Resources

    Source: Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

    State and Federal agency links and frequently asked questions.

  • Individual Disaster Assistance Programs

    Source: Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management

    List of counties in Iowa with disaster declarations and deadlines for assistance applications.

  • Iowa Individual Disaster Assistance Grant Program Application

    Source: Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management

    Apply for grants within 45 days of an active disaster declaration in Iowa.

  • Post Disaster Resources

    Source: Iowa Department of Insurance and Financial Services

    Learn more about what to do after a disaster hits, resources to help you start your insurance claim and find a licensed contractor.

  • Solicitud del Programa de Subvenciones de Asistencia Individual para Desastres de Iowa

    Source: Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management

    Solicite fondos dentro de 45 días posteriores a la declaración de desastre activa en Iowa.

  • USDA Offers Disaster Assistance to Agricultural Producers in Iowa Impacted by Tornadoes and Flooding

    Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has technical and financial assistance available to help farmers and livestock producers recover from these adverse weather events.

Children and Families

  • Being Safe After a Flood (Children's Activity Book)

    Source: Center for Disease Control

    Activity book for children ages 3-7 years.

  • Children and Disasters

    Source: Extension Disaster Education Network

    Resources useful for the whole family in addressing ways to reduce vulnerability to certain disasters as well as disaster preparedness, responding to and recovering from disasters.

  • Look for Helpers

    Source: Michigan State University

    When disaster strikes, young children will have questions about what is happening and why. Take time to plan ahead and be prepared before you begin those tough discussions.

  • Talking with Children about Disasters

    Source: American Academy of Pediatrics

    Kids can better cope with a disaster when they feel they understand what is happening and what they can do to help protect themselves, family, and friends.

Food and Water

  • Check Private Wells for Contamination After Flooding

    Source: Iowa State University

    Wells that have been submerged beneath floodwater or high groundwater tables should be disinfected and tested for safety before using water from them for drinking or food preparation.

  • En Caso de Inundación: Recuperación de Alimentos

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Esta hoja informativa proporciona consejos sobre la manipulación segura de los alimentos contaminados por las inundaciones. 

  • Floods and Water Wells

    Source: Iowa Department of Natural Resources

    Contaminated well water can make you sick. Never consume water from a well if there is any chance the well has been impacted by flood waters.

  • Order a Private Well Water Testing Kit

    Source: State Hygienic Laboratory

    This kit is used to collect a water sample for coliform bacteria and nitrate testing which provides a general indication of the sanitary quality of your drinking water.

  • Power Outage and Food Safety

    Source: Iowa State University

    Guidelines for what to keep and what to dispose of if you've experienced extreme weather conditions such as a severe storm or flooding.

  • Well Flooding Guidance

    Source: Iowa Department of Natural Resources

    For wells located in areas that have been flooded or wells with sources influenced by flood waters.

Data and Technology

  • Data/Computer Recovery

    Source: Iowa State University

    This document contains general guidelines for restoring computer operating following certain types of disasters.

  • Paper Based Document Recovery

    Source: Iowa State University

    Guideline for recovery of water-damaged, paper-based materials.


  • Delayed and Prevented Planting Decision Tool

    Source: Iowa State University

    Help make decisions about corn and soybeans.

  • Delayed and Prevented Planting Provisions for Multiple Peril Crop Insurance

    Source: Iowa State University

    MPCI policies include a 25-day late planting period. In Iowa, this period begins on the day after the final planting date, that is, June 1 for corn and June 16 for soybeans.

  • Flooded Corn Fields and Diseases

    Source: Iowa State University

    Correct diagnosis of corn diseases; including crazy top, Physoderma brown spot and node rot, Goss’s wilt and bacterial stalk rot can help with disease management options in future years including c

  • Flooding Impacts on Corn Growth & Development

    Source: Iowa State University

    This article will address the impacts of flooding on corn production, a key component of agriculture in Iowa & the Midwest.

  • Flooding Impacts on Soybean Growth & Development

    Source: Iowa State University

    Spring ponding, flooding, and saturated soil conditions can be very problematic for soybean seeds and young plants.

  • Flooding in Vegetable Fields

    Source: Iowa State University

    Depending upon the severity of flooding growers could experience saturated soils, nutrient leaching, deficiencies, and above all limited oxygen for plant growth.

  • Flooding in Vegetable Fields

    Source: Iowa State University

    Contamination concerns for vegetable crops and what to do after flooding occurs.

  • Iowa Flooded Feed Testing

    Source: Iowa State University

    Flood damaged crops must be tested for contaminants before being used for animal feed.

  • Management Considerations for Flooded Soils

    Source: Iowa State University

    Heavy rainfall can have economic and environmental consequences if flooded fields are left barren. Long-term damage to soil needs to be considered when planning for next season's crop.

  • Management Guidance for Flooded Grain

    Source: Iowa State University

    According to current Food and Drug Administration policy, grain inundated by uncontrolled river or stream water is considered adulterated and must be destroyed.

  • Renovating Pastures of Hay Meadows Damaged by Flooding

    Source: Iowa State University

    Planning and management considerations for damaged pastures and hay meadows.

  • Summer Flooding of Hay Fields and Pastures

    Source: Iowa State University

    Management suggestions for flooded forage crops.

Mental Wellness

  • Estrés en la Áreas Agrícolas

    Source: Iowa State University

    El estrés en el campo es real.

  • Following Flooding: Managing Additional Stress

    Source: Iowa State University

    Distress is a common reaction for people following a flood.

  • Stress On the Farm

    Source: Iowa State University

    Stress on the farm is real. Use the farm stress resource guide to help recognize mental health concerns, substance use, and warning signs of suicidal intent.


  • Flood Damaged Agricultural Buildings

    Source: University of Minnesota

    Tips for dealing with damaged livestock structures.

  • Guide to Post-Disaster Restoration for a Safe and Healthy Home

    Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

    This guide was developed to help homeowners, volunteers and other workers to restore damaged homes in a way that puts people first.

  • Hiring Contractors after a Disaster

    Source: Iowa State University

    Hiring a contractor can be a daunting task, especially after a disaster when you need one the most.


  • Flood Safety

    Source: Red Cross

    Protect yourself and family by knowing what to do before, during and after a flood.

  • Inundación Lista de Verificación Para la Preparación

    Source: Cruz Roja

    Protéjase a usted y a su familia aprendiendo qué hacer antes, durante y después de una inundación. 

Health and Hazards

  • Higiene Personal Durante y Después de una Inundación

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    El lavado de manos, el baño, el lavado de la ropa, la higiene dental y el cuidado de las heridas son medidas que mantendrán sanas y salvas a todas las personas que colaboren en la limpieza tras las

  • Limpieza posterior a una inundación para proteger la calidad del aire de los interiores

    Source: Agencia de Protección Ambiental de Estados Unidos

    Durante la limpieza posterior a una inundación, la calidad del aire de los interiores de su casa u oficina puede parecer el menor de sus problemas.

  • Los Mosquitos Después de las Inundaciones

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    En esta hoja informativa, se proporcionan consejos sobre cómo evitar las picaduras de mosquitos, sobre los repelentes aprobados y cómo proteger su hogar de este insecto.

  • Mosquitoes After Flooding

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    This fact sheet provides tips for avoiding mosquito bites, approved mosquito repellents and how to mosquito proof your home.

  • Personal Hygiene During and After a Flood

    Source: Iowa Health and Human Services

    Proper hand washing, bathing, washing your clothes, dental hygiene and wound care will keep all people assisting in flood cleanup safe and healthy.

  • Resources for Flood Cleanup and Indoor Air Quality

    Source: United States Environmental Protection Agency

    Flood water can make the air in your home unhealthy.

Yard and Garden

  • How to Manage Flood Damaged Trees

    Source: University of Minnesota Extension

    Tree flood damage can be caused by soil changes, physical damage, insects and diseases.

  • Managing Flood Damaged Yards and Gardens

    Source: Iowa State University

    Learn how to recover vegetable gardens, lawns, perennials and annuals, and trees and shrubs after flood waters recede.

  • Understanding the Effects of Flooding on Trees

    Source: Iowa State University

    Flood-stressed trees show a variety of symptoms and also become candidates for insect and disease damage. Research has found some trees are more tolerant than others.