News & Updates

Tips for dealing with a flood

Mar 02, 2018

Please remember: in case of emergency, dial 9-1-1. For non-emergency issues, dial 311.

General flood protection tips

Sign up for emergency notifications through AlertBoston.

Know your zone! Know your hurricane evacuation zone and route and be prepared to evacuate if directed by public officials.

Similarly, find out how vulnerable your home is to flooding by determining the elevation of your property. If your home is in a flood-prone area, contact the National Flood Insurance program to learn what mitigation measures you can take in advance.

Evaluate your insurance coverage once a year to make sure your home is fully covered.

Contact your local emergency management agency to learn how to construct proper protective measures around your home.

If you live in a flood-prone area, keep these materials on hand: sandbags, plywood, lumber, plastic sheeting, trash bags, shovels, work boots, and gloves.

Put together a disaster supply kit, including a flashlight, batteries, first aid supplies, copies of critical information, and non-perishable food items.

In advance of a flood event

Tie down or bring in outdoor objects (like outdoor furniture and trash receptacles) that could be swept away or damaged during flooding.

Secure loose rain gutters and downspouts and clear any clogged areas or debris to prevent water damage.

Elevate items stored in your basement to prevent damage. If you have a sump pump, check that it is working.

Consider clearing street catch basins to prevent or reduce street flooding.

Consider parking your vehicle away from the harbor, streams or rivers, especially during threatening weather conditions.

Follow any directives to turn off utilities. If you’re advised to switch off the main power source to your home, flip each breaker and THEN turn off the main breaker. You may also need to shut off the main valve for your home’s gas and water service.

After a flood event

If you are evacuated, return home only when authorities have indicated it is safe.

Do not go near any downed power lines, especially if there is standing water nearby.

Avoid walking, bicycling, or driving through flood waters, and allow for extra travel time.

If your home experienced flooding, keep the power off until an electrician has inspected your system for safety.

Do not touch a circuit breaker or replace a fuse with wet hands or while standing on a wet surface.

Have an electrician inspect electrical appliances that have been wet and do not turn on or plug in appliances unless an electrician tells you it is safe. A trained professional may be able to recondition some devices while others will require replacement.

Photograph damage to your property to assist in filing an insurance claim.

Take necessary measures to prevent further damage to private property immediately following a flood event, as damage caused after a qualifying event may not be covered by insurance.

Check on your neighbors, especially those that are elderly and those with disabilities.

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