The risk of flooding is higher if you are in low-lying areas, near water or downstream from a dam or where the surrounding geography has changed by development.
The one thing you can do to protect yourself from flooding… purchase flood insurance. Most homeowner policies do not cover damage from flooding or sewer back-ups. The average flood insurance premium in Wisconsin is about $700 a year, less than $2 a day of financial protection from what could be devastating effects on your home or business. Floods are always traumatic to the survivors, but federal assistance is not always available when a flood occurs. Most federal disaster assistance comes in the form of low-interest loans. But claims on a flood insurance policy can be filed even if a disaster has not been declared.
Turn Around ... Don’t Drown
The Centers for Disease Control report that over half of all flood-related drownings occur when a vehicle is driven into hazardous flood water. The next highest percentage of flood-related deaths is due to walking into or ear flood waters. Why? The main reason is people underestimate the force and power of water. Many of the deaths occur in automobiles as they are swept downstream. Of these drownings, many are preventable, but too many people continue to drive around the barriers that warn you the road is flooded. Most flood-related deaths and injuries could be avoided if people who come upon areas covered with water followed this simple advice: Turn Around Don't Drown®.
The reason that so many people drown during flooding is because few of them realize the incredible power of water. A mere six inches of fast-moving flood water can knock over an adult. It takes only two feet of rushing water to carry away most vehicles. This includes pickups and SUVs.
If you come to an area that is covered with water, you will not know the depth of the water or the condition of the ground under the water. This is especially true at night, when your vision is more limited.
Play it smart, play it safe. Whether driving or walking, any time you come to a flooded road, Turn Around Don't Drown®.
Find out about flood insurance and your flood risk at: www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-888-379-9531
Wisconsin Flood Information
Video: Simple Mitigation Methods A Milwaukee, WI couple used simple mitigation techniques to minimize damage to the basement in their home during the October flooding.