The scariest thing about a flood, whether it be from a river, storm surge, or hurricane, is that you might be asked to evacuate and the potential loss of your home and possessions.  Hopefully you will have a day warning, but even that is not enough time to get ready if you have procrastinated.  There are steps you can do to minimize the emotional trauma surrounding an evacuation and potential loss of property.  These are the steps to follow in order to prepare you and your family for this eventuality.

Step 1: Be Informed.

Pay attention to weather conditions in your area. If you live next to a river the flood stage typically starts upstream and flows down, allowing you to track the progression of the flood waters. If you live in a flood plain you should be aware of this and pay attention to weather warnings as appropriate.

Step 2: Prepare a Disaster Kit.

There is stuff you are going to need regardless of whether you have to evacuate or not. Most of this will not be available if you do not plan ahead of time. Full description of the disaster kit is here. This should be packed in a suitcase, backpack, or other easy to lift and carry container. Storing your disaster kit in bags or having it together in a pile in the garage in inadequate because you may have to leave in a hurry, or in a worse case scenario you may have to walk out with only what you can carry. Study the potential for a flood in your area and prepare accordingly.


Required items include: Water, Water filters, Food, and First aid supplies.

Important items include: Power supply , source of Light , and a stove or some way to heat food.

Optional items include: Sleeping bag, tent, and fire starter



Step 3: Prepare a plan.

Your plan should be customized to your family and situation.  You should share your plan with family and friends who might be part of your plan.  If you live in coastal or low-lying area, an area that floods frequently, on in manufacture housing you will probably be asked to evacuate, otherwise staying in your home is an option.

News and Information:

Flood kit worksheet

Current Hurricanes or Tropical storms

Current Weather Warnings

FEMA Flood page

FEMA Hurricane page

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