Flood Preparedness

Did you know ...

  1. Flooding is the most common natural disaster 
  2. Flash floods are the #1 cause of weather related deaths in the US 
  3. Know the terms 
    1. Flood watch - a flood could happen, be aware 
    2. Flood warning - a flood is imminent or happening 
  4. Standard home insurance does not cover flood damages

During a flood

  1. Turn Around, Don’t Drown 
    1. Each year, deaths occur as a result of flooding. Over half of flood related drownings are caused by vehicles driven into hazardous waters 
    2. 6 inches of moving water can knock over an adult and only 12 inches can carry away a small vehicle. 
  2. Move to higher ground, evacuate if told to do so. 
  3. Avoid creeks and rivers at or near flood stage. 
    1. Floodwaters may be contaminated with oil, gas or raw sewage 
    2. Waters may also be hiding hazards and debris. 
  4. If you are trapped in a building 
    1. Go to the highest level of the building. Avoid basements and lower floors, but do not climb into a closed attic as you may become trapped by rising floodwater 
    2. Go onto your roof only if necessary. Signal for help. 
  5. If you are trapped in your vehicle 
    1. If floodwater is blocking your evacuation route but you can turn around safely, turn around and go to a building on high ground 
    2. If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving water, stay in the vehicle 
    3. If water is rising inside the vehicle, seek refuge on the roof.

More tips for inclement weather:

  • Use caution and stay alert when traveling during stormy weather. Be prepared and make smart choices. 
  • Heavy rains reduce drivers’ visibility. When driving, turn on your lights, increase following distance, slow down, and watch for bicyclists and pedestrians. Visit ODOT's webpage for Driving in the Rain Tips
  • If you see flooding on the road - Turn around. Don't drown. Do not move or drive past road closure barricades. 
  • If you encounter a nonfunctioning traffic signal, treat the intersection as an all-way stop - the driver who stops first goes first. 
  • Leaf-clogged storm drains can result in localized flooding. Clear out storm drains and culverts adjacent to your property to prevent flooding. 
  • If you live in a flood-prone area, visit a self-service sandbag site

Information on how to use sandbags: