How to stay safe during Floods

Want to know how to be safe during floods? Do you know how to take care during and after floods? Interested to know how to be alert and safe guard yourself from floods. Then read this article to know more about the floods.


The most natural and destructive hazards of the Earth are floods. Flooding may happen in many ways. Continuous rainfall, overflowing of rivers, streams, lakes, oceans, collapsing of bridges and dams, melting of ice mountains, tsunamis can all cause floods. A flood is overflowing of water that submerges land that is usually dry. It can happen at low lying or flat areas. Strong moving water has enormous destructive effects. The waters may carry away bridges, houses, cars and may uproot electric poles and trees, may crack and damage buildings and structures. There will be a very dangerous situation for human beings.

People of flooded areas would not get clean drinking water, electricity would be cut off, it leads to water borne epidemic diseases such as hepatitis, typhoid and cholera. Flooding causes loss of life, human and animals, buildings, properties, bridges and sewage systems. It damages power supply, contaminates water. Communication and Transportation , road ways gets disturbed, mobilization of people and food supplies becomes difficult, emergency aids would be delayed and many other services are hampered.
People suffer a lot due to death of family members/near and dear ones, injuries, displacement, daily activity and basic requirements become out of reach. Taking care of children becomes very difficult. Flooding also affects planting of crops/harvesting and makes it unworkable. After effects of floods increases as the water recedes, leading to food shortage, man power and farm animals. The land will be left with mud and slit.

People suffer financially, physically, emotionally and psychologically leading to number of diseases. Every year number of people and livestock die due to drowning, water borne diseases die during floods or after floods. It affects thousands of people. It carries away fertile soil from farming land. Here are some safety measures to be taken during floods to be safe.

How to take care before the floods

  • First and foremost important thing is to stay calm and not to panic during flood. Always keeps the mobile phones charged for emergencies and use messages for communications. Be alert and listen to radio, watch television for weather reports and latest news. Take care to ensure the safety of the animals like dogs, cats, cows, cattle etc and untie them
  • Take care of children, talk to them and provide them with tips to be bold. Keep all your important documents and other valuables in water proof covers to avoid getting soaked in water. Take care to keep first aid kit handy medicines for insect bites, scorpions, snakes and diseases like cold, flue, diarrhea. Have an emergency kit with all necessary things that is essential for the survival

How to take care during the floods

  • Be very careful during the floods, do not enter the flood waters, wear suitable clothes and footwear if you want to enter the waters. Look for electric poles and wires , stay away from them, electric poles would have fallen and it may cause danger or electrocute. Report it to the concerned departments to for repair or fixing up of the electric poles.
  • In case of emergency call for help. Avoid walking in flooded areas, you may not know the presence of sewerage lines, drains, gutters, culverts, open manholes etc. Drink boiled water/clean water; eat fresh food, or dry foods. Take care to cover all food items.

How to take care after floods

  • Use mosquito nets to avoid diseases from insects and mosquito bites to prevent malaria, dengue etc, and avoid sending children for playing near the flood water. Be careful not to use any damaged electrical gadgets. Look out for any electric poles and wires and keep away from them and report it to concerned authorities.
  • Avoid eating any food that has come through flood waters. If the sewage pipes/water pipes are damaged, do not use the tap water and don't use the toilets.

Things to do when you need to relocate or evacuate

  • Raise the tables and bed. Cover all the appliances with water proof bags and place them on the tables and beds. Cover and switch off the main electric connection and turn off the gas connection. Cover the toilet bowls with sandbags and the drain holes to prevent sewage water back flow.
  • Move to a safe place/ or higher level ground to keep away from flood waters. Take all the necessary valuables with you, and the emergency and first aid kits. Be careful not to enter into waters. Have a stick for checking the water level and then seek for officials help.

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Author: Gaurav Singh23 Aug 2017 Member Level: Gold   Points : 4

A very good article on how to be safe during floods. Every year flood hits a large part of our country causing heavy loss to life and property. These tips are really helpful in dealing with havoc of floods.
It is advisable to take some dry food and water bottles during flood. Water is basic need of men and during flood when every hand-pump and wells will be under water. It becomes very hard to get clean drinking water. The situation reminds of the line "water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink". People are advised to take necessary medicines, papers of their home and land, a torch light, dry food items and most important a stick because during floods large number of animals living in burrows came out like snakes and scorpion which are very dangerous to life.
Help others, keep tuned to radio and television for latest updates. Look for some high ground in advance or better shift to some relatives who are out of flood danger zone immediately after the flood alert.

Author: Anauj25 Aug 2017 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 8

When floods are imminent it is best to evacuate. However, if you cannot leave then the next best thing to do is be prepared for every eventuality. Here are a few precautions that people expecting to be inundated can take. Stock up on the following items -
1. A tube of mosquito repellent
2. Candles and matchbox
3. Basic medicines for fever, cough & cold, headache, joint pains and upset stomach for adults and children
4. Medicine for chronic health conditions such as BP, diabetes and allergies etc.
5. Milk powder
6. Edibles such as biscuits and mixture and other foods that do not require cooking
7. Rice, wheat flour, pulses, onions, potatoes, masalas, oil and other edible items that have a long shelf life and can be used to prepare simple meals
8. Drinking water – use bottles and vessels to store drinking water
9. Tablets to purify water
10. Sanitary towels for women
11. Diapers for children

Author: jenny26 Aug 2017 Member Level: Gold   Points : 8

Thank you Gaurav and Juana for reading and giving tips. I would like to mention here that first and foremost help is being preparedness. Every year there is flooding in some parts of our country. People should be alert and move to a safer place before the onset of rains or floods. As they have been experiencing this for years, year after year, they need to take measures to avoid undue suffering and agony. It is a pathetic state that people do not get the basic things for survival. They suffer emotionally and psychologically. Medical help will also be out of reach. More awareness has to be created through campaigns by organizing street plays and demonstrations to help people to equip themselves for safety measures. Social organizations should create large scale awareness program to enlighten and educate people about floods. People should be alert, listen to news, read the newspaper, get information about the situation. Children are worst affected. At a tender age they have to battle for life. In schools, time to be allotted to teach children how to stay safe during floods. They are to be trained to equip themselves how to deal with several aspects, when there is flooding such as food, clothing, shelter. emergency things required, safe guarding important papers, materials, how to care for others, how to take care of one self, how to give first aid, how to protect from diseases, dangerous animals etc. Training should be given to children to build in them strong psychological and emotional balance for them to deal with. Through skits, role plays, dramas, screening, talks and mock sessions children can be taught how to cope with situations like natural calamities. Life saving skills can be taught to them to save life, property and how to survive. Children when young are quick to learn the skills. As they grow up they get equipped with strong skills and may help in dealing with situations in reality and also more efficiently.

Author: Nomita Mitra27 Aug 2017 Member Level: Gold   Points : 4

A well written article by the author. Natural calamities like flood, earthquake, avalanche etc. are some of the major causes that play havoc in the life of men and livestock. In India, thousands of people die or become homeless every year because of these calamities.
Out of all these calamities, flood is most common in rural areas situated mostly on riverbanks. Many reasons can be attributed to flood. Some of them are:

1. Heavy or torrential rain.
2. Releasing excess water from dams and barrages.
3. Blockage of river path by silt or unauthorized constructions.

Plight of people during flood-

1. People living in flood effected areas loses almost everything.
2. Sometimes, they need to evacuate their houses without bothering for their material belongings or livestock.
3. Supply of food stuff becomes exhausted and people have to starve.
4. Availability of potable water becomes nightmarish.
5. Cases of snake-bite and attack of wild animals increase manifold as the creatures also lose their homes.

Aftermath of flood=

1.Epidemic spreads rapidly.
2.People suffer from many water-borne diseases due to use of contaminated water.
3.Standing crops in the fields get partially or completely destroyed.

What can we do to help the flood victims-

1.Open relief camps for them with arrangements for shelter, food, medicines and other necessities of daily life till help from the administration arrives.
2.Provide old clothes to them.
3. Help them to start life afresh as the flood water recedes.

Author: Partha K.23 Oct 2017 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 6

An informative and useful article from the author. She has beautifully explained the do's before, during and after the flood. In this connection, I would like to add the following:-
(a) People should avoid unplanned construction in flood-prone areas.
(b) In the buildings in flood-prone areas, furnace, water heater and electric heater should be suitably elevated.
(c) Basement walls should be properly sealed with water-proofing compounds to avoid seepage.
(d) During flood, radio helps to get information.
(e) People should remain aware of flash flood during heavy rainfall. In case of flash flood, people should move immediately to higher grounds.
(f) In flood-prone areas, people should be aware of streams, water channels, etc. which are known to flood all of a sudden.
(g) If there is requirement of immediate evacuation, people should take emergency kit, dry food and cleean drinking water.
(h) Emergency kit should contain torch,transistor, dry cell, first aid equipment, medicines for common ailments, knife, chlorine tablets, candles, cash, AADHAR card, ATM card, etc., suitable footwears, thick ropes and chords.
(i) At the time of evacuation, all electrical appliances must be switched off.
(j) During and after the flood, people must be very careful about wild animals especially snakes and water-borne diseases.

Concluding my comments, I strongly recommend this article to know about the do's and dont's during flood.

Author: K Mohan05 Sep 2018 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 2

What I feel is that a little planning from us is a must during floods. One of my relatives who was caught in the Chennai floods a few years back had done some good thing which I want to share here. When she was watching television about the updates and heard that water level was rising in her area, she immediately shifted her main belongings and electronic gadgets to the top floor and on her advise her neighbors also shifted their things to the top floor and what she feared did happen. Her ground floor flat was entirely submerged and she was able to save her television, fridge, washing machine, cell phones and some costly clothes and jewels from being washed away by the flood waters. The children were frightened for six days without light and whole lots of water everywhere. She also managed to have some food for her children daily which were prepared earlier. My hats off to her for thinking about the future and taking necessary action.

Author: Umesh05 Sep 2018 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 4

A nice article bringing out the various precautions and preparedness to be observed during flood conditions.

Generally, many people do not keep their papers, documents and other important items in an orderly way. Due to this, during disasters, they will always be in a panicky state as there will be less time in hand and arranging one's valuables, documents etc will take significant time.

So it is imperative that we should keep our things category wise and at an approachable place so that we can take them with us in a short time. By doing this we can avoid many hassles which may arise later due to their unavailability.

Flood is only one scenario. There can be a fire in the building or due to industrialization, leakage of poisonous gases or chemicals cannot be ruled out and fire due to gas explosion or electric short circuit are so common.

So let us arrange our things beforehand and being proactive in such matters will definitely pay handsome dividends.

Author: Reena Upadhya06 Sep 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 8

Before floods-
It is very important to keep the possessions safe. Create a file and name it as flood file. You need to keep all your important documents in it. Keep your insurance policies in it. Make sure to keep it in a safe and secure place. There may be a safe deposit box in your house. Make sure to keep that file in the safe deposit box. Or else, keep it in a waterproof container.

Next step is the preparation of the house to handle the floods. There will be a power failure and God knows for how many days when floods hit the area. Make sure to install a backup that is operated on a battery. Furnace, dryer, washer, water heater and other components that run on electricity should be placed above the ground, preferably on the cement blocks.

Talk to your family and the people living in your neighborhood. It is a situation in which cumulative efforts pay off. It is not a scenario where one person can handle everything. Come up with a flood exit route from various places such as home, office, school. This route should lead you to the high ground. Everyone in the family should know how to contact each other during an emergency. Friend or a relative who is living far away can be made as an emergency contact. Planning should be in depth. The plan should include escaping to remaining safe during floods. It should include the safety of everyone from children to pets and from relatives and friends to the people living nearby.

During Floods-
As soon as the flood hits your city or town, reach the higher grounds. You need to avoid those areas which are susceptible to flooding. Do not try to wander and deviate from the safe routes either by driving or walking through the flooded routes. Always listen to the signals and appropriate directions given by local officials. Staying updated in one manner or the other will help everyone to successfully remain safe and secure during floods.

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