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Resources for Flood Victims

Resources for Flood Victims

(Source: Creative Commons)


October 01, 2009

With Typhoon Ketsana brewing in the Pacific and drenching storms flooding southeast America, death tolls are rising as the need for disaster relief aid intensifies in these areas. If you live in one of these storm-tossed areas, be sure to follow these tips to stay safe, healthy and most importantly, alive.

Flood-Related Injuries and Safety Guidelines

Flood-related injuries and illnesses reported to the Department of Health:
• Back injuries
• Fractures
• Cuts
• Joint and muscle injuries
• Anxiety and stress
• Injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes
• Carbon monoxide poisoning.

The Department of Health provides the following safety guidelines for people involved in the flood fight:
• Do not overexert yourself if you are not used to doing strenuous work. Know your physical limits and take frequent breaks.
• Make sure to lift properly – with your legs, not your back.
• Always wear your seatbelt and drive safely.
• Use alternate heating and power sources according to manufacturer instructions. If portable generators are used, do not place them in an enclosed area such as a garage or near a window, door or fresh-air intake.
• When cleaning up after a flood, wear sturdy shoes, protective eyewear and masks, if possible.
• Dispose of garbage properly.
• Wash your hands before you eat or drink.
• Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.
• If you become injured, wash the wound with soapy water and seek medical care if needed.
• If you have concerns about being exposed to a poisonous substance, call the Poison Center at 800.222.1222.

Additional flood-related safety and cleanup information is available on the <a href=”” target="_blank">Centers for Disease and Prevention website.

Tips for Surviving a Flood

• If flooding occurs, get to higher ground. Avoid areas subject to flooding, including dips, low spots, canyons and washes.
• Avoid areas that are already flooded. Do not attempt to cross flowing streams. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.
• Never drive through flooded roadways. If you come upon a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way.

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