On average, U.S. flooding kills about 150 people a year - more than any other single weather hazard, including tornadoes and hurricanes.
During a flood:
- Listen to a battery-powered radio for emergency information.
- Evacuate as instructed by emergency personnel.
- If outdoors:
- Climb to higher ground and stay there.
- Avoid walking through any floodwaters. If moving swiftly, even water 6 inches deep can sweep you off your feet.
- If in a car:
- If coming up to a flooded area, turn around and go another way.
- If the car stalls, abandon it immediately and climb to higher ground. Many deaths have resulted from attempts to move stalled vehicles.
During an evacuation:
- If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.
- Evacuation is much simpler and safer before floodwaters become too deep for ordinary vehicles to drive through.
- Listen to a battery-powered radio for evacuation instructions.
- Follow recommended evacuation routes -- shortcuts may be blocked.
- Leave early enough to avoid being marooned by flooded roads.
After a flood:
- Do not return to a flooded area until authorities indicate it is safe to do so.
- Stay out of buildings if flood waters remain around the building.
- Use extreme caution when otherwise entering buildings. Watch for loose plaster and ceilings that could fall.
- Be alert for fire hazards, such as broken or leaking gas lines, flooded electrical circuits, submerged appliances, and flammable or explosive materials.