Safety Tips for New York Flash Floods
NEW YORK—A list of safety reminders were sent out by the office of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, which could be life saving amid the flash flood warnings for July 1 and 2.
Keep track of advisories, including possibly evacuations. Move loose items indoors, keep valuables on upper floors, and disconnect electrical appliances that can’t be moved. Also, lock your doors and windows.
Driving in a flood is no joke. If you plan to travel, make sure you have enough gas so you don’t get stuck. Go straight to your destination and keep tabs on local radio broadcasts. Keep an eye out for flooded roads, earth-slides, and broken water lines.
The press release warns to not underestimate the “destructive power of fast-moving water.” It notes that just two feet of fast-moving water is enough to float your car. If that happens, and water starts to rise around you, it warns, “abandon the vehicle immediately.”
In short, don’t even try driving through flood waters. Find another route.
Drinking water can also become an issue. The local health departments advise bringing water to a boil for a full minute to kill bacteria. If the water is cloudy, muddy, or off-color, then don’t drink it.
If you don’t have a supply of bottled water, you can fill your bathtub ahead of time as a reserve.
Don’t eat food if it comes into contact with flood waters—including the food container.
Also, don’t run generators indoors. Only run them outdoors at a safe, downwind location from your house.
After a flood, you should always turn off the gas line before checking a house for damage. Wear rubber boots and gloves. Don’t step or stand in water. Don’t start any flames, since gas sometimes gets trapped. And don’t turn on electrical appliances until they’ve been checked by an electrician.