On the heels of devastating floods which hit North Dakota last month, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) has issued safety recommendations to residents who live in areas prone to flash flooding.
The agency’s website offers downloadable materials, including home and car emergency kit checklists and emergency plan templates.
Stressing the importance of preparing in advance, PEMA Director Robert P. French says, "[Residents should check their] insurance policies to ensure appropriate coverage including content and flood insurance, since it normally takes 30 days for new policies to become effective."
According to French, basic survival tips include memorizing more than one evacuation route, regularly reviewing a family’s emergency plan so that everyone knows where to go when flash flooding occurs and where to reunite afterwards.
Each household should also have an emergency preparedness kit and keep it within easy reach in case of an evacuation.
It is also important to understand the difference between a flash flood warning and a flash flood watch.
The latter means flooding may occur, so residents should stay alert and watch rivers and streams.
By contrast, flood warning is issued when flooding is under way, and residents should move immediately to high ground.