Flood Damage >> Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

While it can take several days for the larger rivers to flood, flooding caused by ice jams, flooding on the smaller streams, local drainage problems, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom and sewer backup can come with little warning.If weather conditions look like flooding, the National Weather Service issues two types of flood notices:9 

Flood watch: flooding is possible within the area described by the notice.9 Flood warning: flooding is imminent or occurring.To stay abreast of weather warnings, listen to NOAA Weather Radio. This is a radio station operated by the Weather Service.  Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

You can buy a special battery-operated weather radio at a local electronics store for $20–$35. It issues an alert signal if a watch or warning is being issued. (see also www.crh.noaa.gov/lot/nwr.php).There are several locations on the larger rivers where the Weather Service monitors river levels. Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

You can see their "real time" levels at www.crh.noaa.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=lot. These cantell you if the streams are rising or falling.If you hear a siren or a severe weather watch or warning, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom check the latest instructions on localradio and TV stations. 

Once the emergency management agencies are sure that the danger haspassed, they will issue an "all clear" message. Remember: You may not get a flash floodwarning before flooding actually begins. Play it safe in stormy weather, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom and read the nextsection.

What You Should Do

Once you hear a flood watch or warning, you should take the following steps: 

1. If the radio, television, or emergency vehicle announced what to do, follow thoseinstructions.

2. Implement your flood response plan, if you have one. If a flood watch was issued, you canstill make a flood response plan that includes the items in section 3 on see page 4. Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

3. If you are in the mapped floodplain or suspect you are subject to deep flooding that will getinside your house:

a. Turn off the electricity and gas (see pages 18– 19).

b. Read "Flood Safety Outdoors" on the back cover.

c. Lock your doors and evacuate

4. If you don't have a place on high ground where you can stay, listen to the radio or TV forinformation on public shelters. If you are not in the mapped floodplain, it is unlikely that you will be flooded deeply. If thestreets are underwater, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom you are better off staying in your house (See the graphic on page2).

Read "Flood Safety Indoors" on the back cover.6. If you are not in the mapped floodplain, but you know that your basement floods:

a. Turn off the basement electricity (see below).

b. Turn off the gas (see the next page).

c. Move any valuables upstairs.

d. Stay out of the basement if the water outdoors is touching the house (the water pressurecould collapse the walls).

Turning Off the Utilities

If your house or basement could get flooded, turn off your utilities to prevent greater damage.This section provides directions on how you can do this safely. If you are unsure of how to dothese things, ask a friend or neighbor to help you, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom or don't do them at all.Electricity: The most important utility to turn off is electricity. 

You have a fuse box or abreaker box in the house. The breaker box is more common in newer buildings or if you havehad some electrical work done in the last 10– 20 years. The illustrations below shows how toturn off the power. Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

Gas: Floodwaters may knock out pilot lights and silt may get into burners. To prevent a fire andsafety hazard, you should turn off the gas before you leave. There is a valve next to the gasmeter. If the valve handle is parallel to the pipe, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom the gas is on. 

You may need a pair of pliers or awrench to turn the valve. Turn it 90 degrees (a quarter turn) so the handle is perpendicular to thepipe to shut the gas off. Most gas meter valves have a hole inthe handle that lines up with a hole inthe valve body when the gas is shut off.This hole is used by the gas company tolock or Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom seal the valve closed when thebuilding is vacant. 

When the holes arelined up, you know that the gas supplyhas been shut off. If you have anydoubts, play it safe and Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom call your gascompany.Fuel oil tanks: If you have a fuel oil orpropane tank, turn off the fuel valve atthe tank. 

Check for leaky fuel pipes by smelling for gas.A chemical that has a disagreeable, distinctive odor is added tonatural gas and propane to tell you if there is a leak. If you haveany doubts, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom have a professional check for you. Do not use openflames.Make sure the valve that leads to each appliance is closed. 

If youfind any pipes that moved or any area that smells like gas, brushsoapy water on each pipe connection (as illustrated). The pressurein the pipes will make bubbles appear where there is a leak.If you find a leak, turn off the gas. Unscrew the pipe connection,clean the joint, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom and apply pipe joint compound or pipe tape(available at hardware stores) on the threads. 

Screw the piecesback together tightly. Turn on the gas and check the connectionagain with soapy water. If you have a leak, or you are not sureyour system is safe, turn off the gas and Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom call a professionalimmediately.Water. 

Since your water faucets are usually turned off, you shouldn't have to worry aboutturning all the water to the house off. However, if your washing machine is in the basement, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom or ifthe floodwaters around your house could be several feet deep, the floodwaters could get into thewater lines through the appliances. 

If you have the time, turn off the water to the house. Thereshould be a valve near the water meter, similar to a faucet knob. Turn it all the way clockwise. If you've been flooded, Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom your home and its contents may look beyond hope, but many of yourbelongings can be restored. 

If you do things right, your flooded home can be cleaned up, driedout, rebuilt, and reoccupied sooner than you think.You should get a copy of Repairing Your Flooded Home (ARC4477), published jointly by theAmerican Red Cross and Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 

Copies of the book areavailable free from your local Red Cross chapter or you can see it at www.redcross.org/services/disaster/ (go to "after a disaster," then "floods").Here are some of the first things you can do after a flood. The next steps are explained (alongwith more details) in Repairing Your Flooded Home. Prevent A Flood In Your Bathroom

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