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Gear up for flood risk this spring

Date:
March 19, 2014
Source:
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Summary:
Flooding could be severe this spring. An emergency physician and disaster preparedness expert warns to be ready, saying that keeping informed is the key to staying safe during flooding events: know your risk, pay attention to media reports, and have a plan.

The risk of flooding is rising nationwide as snow melt from heavy winter weather mixes with anticipated spring rains. Minor flooding is already reported in some areas of the country, including the Florida panhandle, Indiana and Illinois, and the National Weather Service predicts minor flooding across large areas of the Midwest and South, with heavier flooding likely in the upper Midwest and along the lower Mississippi River valley.

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"Flooding can occur quickly, and we need to prepare for it, just as we need to prepare for other weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes," said Sarah Nafziger, M.D., an emergency medicine physician at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and assistant state emergency medical services medical director for the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Nafziger says keeping informed is the key to staying safe during flooding events. Know your risk, pay attention to media reports, and have a plan.

"If flooding is expected in your area, plan an escape route that leads to higher ground, and prepare an emergency kit with first aid supplies and medicine, batteries, water, flashlights, and nonperishable food," she said. "Charge your electronic devices, and be ready to flee."

Nafziger says the National Weather Service website is a good source for additional recommendations before, during and after flooding; these include avoiding flood waters, heeding road closings and cautionary signs, and waiting for an official "all clear" before returning to a flooded area.

"The aftermath of flood can be just as dangerous as the actual flooding, with disease, electrical hazards and even displaced animals as threats," Nafziger said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Alabama at Birmingham. The original article was written by Bob Shepard. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Alabama at Birmingham. "Gear up for flood risk this spring." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319114606.htm>.
University of Alabama at Birmingham. (2014, March 19). Gear up for flood risk this spring. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319114606.htm
University of Alabama at Birmingham. "Gear up for flood risk this spring." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319114606.htm (accessed December 18, 2014).

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