You’re familiar with the saying “April showers bring May flowers”. Well, April showers can bring a lot more than just flowers – they can bring flooding. Sometimes lots of flooding. And that flooding can cause extensive damage to your home or business.
Spring rains can be intense, especially here in Florida. You’ve seen the photos on TV and on social media of flooded neighborhoods with neighbors rescuing their neighbors with boats and jet skis. Or people using paddleboards to exit their flooded neighborhood. This kind of flooding can and does happen.
The rains can be so heavy and saturate the ground to the point that flooding will occur. When the ground becomes saturated and the water has nowhere to run off, it will build up quickly. Now, consider the fact that hurricane season begins shortly after the Spring rains. Hopefully the ground has dried out a bit before hurricane season begins as the experts are anticipating that it will be another above average year. Tropical Storm Risk (http://tropicalstormrisk.com/) predicts we could have around 15 tropical storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.
No matter how we look at it, spring rains will lead into hurricane season and that means that now is the time to become educated and prepare for wet weather! Let’s face it – your home and your business are probably the two biggest investments you will ever make. Taking the time now to protect them will undoubtedly pay off in the long run.
Here are some things you can do right now to protect your home and your business.
- Have your roof shingles examined for damaged or missing shingles
- Inspect skylight seals
- Clean your gutters
- Contact your insurance agent to go over your policies now. In most cases there is a 30-day waiting period for the coverage to kick in.
- Flood Zone. Become familiar with your flood zone. Check out the free flood-mapping feature from Flood Zone (floodpartners.com) by putting your address or zip code in their home page search.
- Evacuation. Know your evacuation routes in case its necessary to leave for higher ground.
- Emergency kit. Prepare an emergency kit that contains medical supplies, food, a battery operated radio flashlights and batteries.
- If flooding becomes an issue, your community will offer free sandbags. Be prepared to bring a shovel and your own bags as generally only the sand/dirt are offered.
- Don’t ever drive through a flooded street as there may be ruts or small sink holes that will damage your car.
- Official Terms. Know the meaning of the watch/warning terms. The Red Cross (redcross.org) defines:
- flood or flash flood watch as something that is possible
- flood or flash flood warning means that flooding is already happening or will very soon and that you should take immediate precautions
We need rain. And because we live in Florida, we’re sure to get rain, plenty of rain! Talk with your insurance agent who can give you more information and will work with you to ensure that your investments (i.e. your home, possessions, vehicles, business, etc.) will be protected…just in case.
This information is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as professional advice. Should you have any questions or would like to discuss your risk exposure with your flood insurance, please contact the insurance pros at ARCW Insurance. We are here to help.