Quick trivia question: what’s the most common disaster in the U.S. that impacts the most people year after year? The answer: Flooding. This week, we’re focused on flood safety as part of National Flood Awareness Week. I went back through the video archives and pulled out two stories that demonstrate our key themes for this week. If you’ve got five minutes, these two videos are worth your time.
The first one is from Hurricane Irene in 2011. It profiles a town in Vermont that dealt with significant flooding and shows many of the ways flooding can disrupt our lives.
The take a way: have a plan so you know what to do in case of a flood. Think through questions like:
- What roads in my community tend to flood first? Will this impact my travel around town?
- How will I stay in touch with family/friends if flooding knocks out cell phone service?
- Where would I go if local officials tell me to evacuate the area due to flooding?
- What’s the risk of flooding for my area?
If you haven’t thought about these questions before, don’t worry. Ready.gov is a great resource for making your plan today.
The second video is especially relevant for homeowners and builders. Here’s how two homeowners in Sea Bright, New Jersey minimized the impact of flooding from Hurricane Sandy by taking deliberate steps in and around their homes. It all starts with knowing your neighborhood’s risk for flooding, then taking the appropriate steps.
You may not need to put in flood vents or raise critical parts of your home over a certain elevation level, but steps like these may be right for those who live in flood prone areas. The quote that makes the video for me is: "Will we ever see another storm like that? I don't think so, but who knows?" The homeowners recognize that while some disasters are unlikely, that shouldn’t stop them from being prepared, just in case.
All week long we’ll be sharing flood safety information on Twitter, Facebook, and on Ready.gov. I hope you’ll join us this week in learning more about what flooding can do and how you can take steps to get prepared.