Much of the eastern half of the country is facing a very high threat of flooding over the next several days and the American Red Cross urges people who may be impacted to follow these safety steps.
Heavy rain and warm temperatures leading to a rapid melting of snow have many rivers nearing record flood stage from Chicago to Houston and areas to the east. If you are in an area where flooding is a possibility:
- Assemble an emergency preparedness kit.
- Create a household evacuation plan that includes your pets.
- Listen to local officials and evacuate if told to do so.
- Continue listening to local area radio, NOAA radio or TV stations for the latest information and updates.
- Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.
- Turn around, don’t drown. Don’t walk, swim or drive through floodwater. Just six inches of fast-flowing water can knock you over and two feet will float a car.
- If caught on a flooded road with rapidly rising waters, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground.
- Don’t walk on beaches or riverbanks.
- Don’t allow children to play in or near flood water.
- Avoid contact with floodwater. It may be contaminated with sewage or contain dangerous insects or animals.
- Stay out of areas subject to flooding. Underpasses, dips, low spots, canyons, washes, etc. can become filled with water.
- Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood danger.
DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do in case of tornadoes, flooding and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and an I’m Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.