Flood Disaster Preparations

Natural disasters and hazards hit every region of the United States in varying degrees and it's your responsibility as a property manager or a landlord to make sure that your property is as ready for a disaster as it can be. One of the most common hazards you will encounter is flooding, use the following information to get your property ready in case there is a flood in your region.

Your first step is purchasing flood insurance, which isn't included in most standard homeowners' insurance plans. You'll have to know the flood susceptibility of your property and where the floods will come from.

Then prepare your home by elevating your electric panel, water heater and furnace as much as possible to protect them from flood damage. Install check valves in sewer traps to prevent flood water from backing up into your home and causing more damage.

If a flood is coming and you have to evacuate, move valuables to the highest floor if possible. Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves, unplug electrical appliances, but don't touch any electrical equipment if you're already standing in water.?

If you are evacuating try to avoid driving and walking in moving water, it only takes about six inches of moving water to knock you off your feet or to cause stalling and loss of control in your vehicle. If you have to walk about use a stick to probe the ground in front of you so you can be as sure on your feet as possible.

If you have had flooding problems in the past, you may want to create a packet for your tenants giving them information on what steps to take in case of a flood and how to escape safely.

Kristin Kizer
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