Late winter flooding in 2018 severely impacted northern Indiana where more than $2.6 million in federal grant funding was provided to residents who sustained disaster damage. Already this year we’ve seen ice jams and localized flooding in the Upper Midwest caused by ice melt and water run-off – and Spring hasn’t even started yet. Is your home ready for the heightened flood risks during the warmer months?
“Snowmelt, ice jams and heavy rainfall are all flood risks as the days start to warm,” said FEMA Regional Administrator James K. Joseph. “It’s so important to prepare now and not wait until a flood is imminent to be sure you, your family and your home stay safe.”
Check your insurance coverage. Did you know one inch of water in a home could cost more than $25,000 in flood damage? A flood insurance policy could protect you from the devastating out-of-pocket expenses caused by flooding. Don’t wait until it’s too late. A policy takes 30 days to go into effect from application and payment. A typical homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy does not cover floods. Learn more about your flood insurance options at www.FloodSmart.gov
Conduct a household inventory. Be sure to keep a record of all major household items and valuables. These documents are important when filing insurance claims. For help in conducting a home inventory, visit www.knowyourstuff.org
Protect documents & keep important supplies close at hand. Have extra food, water, medications, and emergency supplies ready in case you need them. Store copies of irreplaceable documents (such as birth certificates, passports, etc.) in a safe, dry place. Keep originals in a safe deposit box.
Install a sump pump. Sump pumps propel groundwater away from your home and can be an excellent defense against basement seepage and flooding. Choose a battery-operated sump pump in case the power goes out.
Prevent sewer backups. Install drain plugs for all basement floor drains to prevent sewer backups. Have a licensed plumber install sewer backflow valves for all pipes entering the building to prevent floodwater and wastewater from backing up into your home through toilets, sinks and other drains.
Elevate appliances & electrical equipment. Raise and anchor service equipment and appliances such as air-conditioning units, water heaters, heat pumps, and water meters onto platforms so they are at least one foot above the potential flood height. FEMA has more information on our Protecting Service Equipment page.
To learn more about what to do before, during and after a flood, visit Ready.gov/floods.