Water Programs offers tips on flooding

With the recent heavy rainfall, the Pierce County Water Programs presents the following flood awareness information as a community service.
Take Steps to Prepare
If you know that you live in a flood-prone area, taking a little time to prepare can increase your safety and help minimize your losses during a flood. Here are some specific steps that can be taken:
n Learn the safest route from your home or business to high, safe ground. Be aware of low-lying areas that flood early and block your evacuation. If you have livestock, make plans for moving them to a higher area;
n Keep the following items on hand: portable radio, flashlights, fresh batteries, containers with clean drinking water, first aid kit, warm clothing, non-perishable foods;
n Remember that during a flood, electric power and other utilities may be interrupted. Plan also for your pet’s needs;
n Additional items that may help you protect your property include plastic sheeting, sandbags and plywood sheets;
n Store valuables in higher areas, such as the second floor;
n Store hazardous material above the anticipated flood level if possible;
n Prepare a list of personal property. Photographs or a video of your house, inside and out, can help with insurance claims or uninsured loss tax deductions after a flood;
n Consider purchasing flood insurance. Most home insurance policies do not cover flood losses. Check with your insurance agent.
How to React during Flood
n Keep your radio tuned to a local station for up-to-date weather and flood warning information;
n Remember that floods are deceptive. Avoid flooded areas and do not try to walk or drive through flood waters or through barricaded areas;
n Move to the upper story if inside and wait for assistance. Take your radio, flashlights and other emergency supplies. DO NOT attempt to swim to safety.
Flood information can be obtained by calling 253/798-4274, where there is a recorded message about the condition and concerns of the area during heavy rains. You can also leave a recorded message about a flooding concern in the community.
The Water Programs Web site is located at:
www.co.pierce.wa.us/swm.

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