Understanding the type of hazardous weather that may affect you and your family where you live is an important component to preparedness.
Prepare with Sandbags
- Find out if your property or neighborhood has a history of flooding.
- Get sandbags ahead of the storm and learn how to fill them.
Thunderstorm Safety Tips
- Use a battery-operated radio or Weather Radio for updates from local officials.
- Avoid contact with electrical equipment or cords.
- Unplug appliances and other electrical items, such as computers and televisions, to prevent damage from surges caused by lightning strikes.
- Avoid contact with plumbing. Do not wash your hands, do not take a shower, do not wash dishes, and do not do laundry. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
- Stay away from windows and doors.
- Do not lie on concrete floors or lean against concrete walls.
- Avoid natural lightning rods such as a tall, isolated tree in an open area.
- Avoid hilltops, open fields, the beach or a boat on the water.
- Take shelter in a building. Avoid isolated sheds or other small structures in open areas.
- Avoid contact with anything metal—tractors, farm equipment, motorcycles, golf carts, golf clubs, and bicycles.
- If you are driving, try to safely exit the roadway and park. Stay in the vehicle and turn on the emergency flashers until the heavy rain ends. Avoid touching metal or other surfaces that conduct electricity in and outside the vehicle.
- If lightning strikes you or someone you know, call 9-1-1 for medical assistance as soon as possible.
- Continue to listen to a Weather Radio or to local radio and television stations for updated information or instructions.
- Stay away from downed power lines and report them immediately.
- Check on pets or livestock. Watch your animals closely. Keep them under your direct control.
Flooding Safety Tips
- Move immediately to higher ground when there is a flood warning. Evacuate if directed.
- Stay out of flood waters, if possible, and do not drive into flooded areas. Even water only several inches deep can be dangerous.
- If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Do not leave the car and enter moving water.
- Turn on your TV/radio. You will receive the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
- Know where to go. You may need to reach higher ground quickly and on foot.
- Plan how to take care of your pets.
- Emergency preparedness kits should include a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies. Keep these supplies in an easy to carry bag, should you need to evacuate quickly.
- After a flood, avoid standing water as it may be electrically charged from underground or down power lines. Only return home with authorities say it is safe.
- Emergency Supplies Kit
- Flood and Disaster Tips NFPA (PDF)
- Lightning Safety (PDF)
- Storm Information and Preparedness