How prepared is your home for a flood? We have been thinking about this a lot since last week’s unprecedented flooding after the atmospheric river hit our province, so I have put together a post with some tips to help you prepare for when the unexpected hits.
There are now two more atmospheric rivers in British Columbia’s forecast over the next couple of days, and although thankfully neither is expected to be as intense as the one that triggered widespread flooding and landslides last week, being proactive and staying alert and prepared is always the best way to go.
- Do you have a basement? Set up a sump pump, and if it is electric, make sure to get a battery-operated backup in case the power goes out during the flood. Check that everything is working properly before the heavy rain hits.
- Pay close attention to weather alerts. If a flood watch has been issued, take action, and if there is an evacuation order for your area, act immediately, as every minute counts in that situation.
- If there is a weather alert and you know a possible flooding situation can unfold, be proactive and move furniture, valuables, and any important documents, photographs, etc., to a safe spot in your home. Keep your critical documents like birth certificates, passports, insurance policies, wills in a waterproof safety box in an easy-to-reach place.
- Build a Household Emergency Kit and keep it in an easy-to-reach spot. Ensure that everyone in the family knows where the kit is kept. The kit should contain at least three days’ worth of water and food for everyone in the home, including your pet, along with essentials like flashlights, crank radio, and more. A full list of what you should have in your emergency kit is here: “How to Build a Household Emergency Kit.”
- Purchase Flood Insurance. Check your home insurance and see if it covers the damage costs of floods. If not, it is a good idea to chat with your insurance provider to see what options they offer if you would like to increase your coverage.
- The BC Government has created a comprehensive Flood Preparedness Guide with more in-depth information to help you and your family prepare and stay safe in the event of a flood. You can access it here.
Stay safe, everyone!