18 Things to Know about Flood Safety

Keep these facts in mind to stay alive and dry.

1. 1 Flash floods can come rapidly and unexpectedly. They can occur within a few minutes or hours of excessive rainfall, or when a dam or levee fails and even a sudden release of water held by an ice or debris jam. Be cautious during storm seasons, or any time that flooding is common in your area.

2. 2 You may not have warning that a flash flood is approaching.

3. 3 Do not drive unless absolutely necessary.

4. 4 Try to avoid driving through flooded areas. If you see a flooded-out road ahead, it may be best to turn around & try another route to your destination.

5. 5 If there is no other route and the road is impassable, get to higher ground and wait for the waters to subside.

6. 6 Even if the water appears shallow enough to cross, remember: Water hides dips in the road. Worse yet, there may be no road at all under the water. Flooding can scour away the entire road surface and a significant amount of ground beneath.

7. 7  If you have to drive in a flooded area take care. Do not attempt to drive through water if you are unsure of the depth.

8. 8 Don't drive through fast-moving water, such as at a flooded bridge approach – your car could be swept away

9. 9 Drive slowly and steadily to avoid creating a big bow wave, also allow on-coming traffic to pass first.

10. 10 Keep the engine revving by slipping the clutch otherwise water can be sucked back through the exhaust & could stall the engine.

11. 11  If your car stalls, abandon it immediately and climb to higher ground. Watch your footing. Just six inches of fast-moving flood water can sweep a person off his or her feet. 

12. 12  Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars, causing loss of control or possible stalling.

13. 13  One foot of water will almost float many vehicles.

14. 14 Two feet of rushing water can sweep away most vehicles — including SUVs and pick-ups.

15. 15 Modern vehicles are fitted with catalytic converters in the exhaust system. The catalyst normally works at high temperatures and may crack if it is submerged in water. Replacement catalysts are expensive.

16. 16 The air intake on many modern cars is located low down at the front of the engine bay and it only takes a small quantity of water sucked into the engine to cause serious damage. All engines are affected but turbo-charged and diesel engines are most vulnerable.

17. 17 Be considerate – driving through water at speeds above a slow crawl can result in water being thrown onto pavements, soaking pedestrians or cyclists. You could face a fine of £2,500, with the extra punishment of between three and nine penalty points if the police believe you were driving without reasonable consideration to other road users

18. 18 Test your brakes as soon as you can after driving through water. 


A useful tip before you drive through flood waters is to drape a Blanket or plastic sheet from just above the Front grill down to the Road. When the water hits this it will, Firstly stop water going through a front mounted radiator and the fan spraying water over the engine. Secondly, it will wrap round a short way under the car and help to create a small ‘Bow Wave’ and therefore making the water around the engine shallower.

 Do make sure that this covering is not too long or too wide as you do not want or need it to go to far under the car and you defiantly don’t want to interfere with your front wheels

Make sure you remove it after you are through the flood

Text Box:  
Useful tips for Drivers in flooded areas:-
If you live in an area where flooding may occur, move your vehicle to higher ground if flooding is expected. As well as the risk of damage to your vehicle by leaving it in a flooded area, it may also be a hazard or cause obstruction to emergency services. 
If the vehicle has been stood in the flooded area for any prolonged period contact your local dealer for further advice. 
If the vehicle has only been in a flood for a short period, drive with extreme caution and take the car to be checked at the earliest opportunity. 
Escape From A Sinking Car
In deep water you will have to get out and swim to safety.
If the windows are electric open them immediately. We are told that if the windows are crank operated, wait until the car is almost filled with water, then crank the windows down to swim out.
However, an experiment was shown on television to see whether it was better to stay in a sinking car until the pressure was equal inside and out and then escape, or whether to open a window and get out as soon as possible. The result was that to stay in the car to allow the pressure to equalize as it filled with water, opening the windows at the last moment nearly got them drowned, as the force of the water was even too great for them to overcome without severe difficulty. When they opened the windows straight away before the car started sinking and left the car and swam away from it there was no problem, and the experiments showed that there is ample time before a car sinks to do this.
So open the windows as soon as you can and hold on to a part of the car such as the steering wheel. After the car fills with water swim through the windows.

Floods are Deceptive, Dangerous and Deadly

When a large amount of rain falls over a short period of time, ditches, rivers and lakes can overflow their banks, dams or levees break  After a heavy deep snow fall you can get a run off of water. All of the above can flow into low-lying or poorly drained areas. In addition to the high frequency of excessive rainfall events, the impacts of flooding in Britain may increase as the country's urban development grows.

There are many types of flood that can occur around the country:-


 River Floods :-

These floods occur when surface water flow rises and channels overflow.


  Coastal Floods :-

These floods occur when coastal areas of land become inundated with sea water.


Urban Floods :-

Built-up areas can experience up to 6 times greater run off than rural areas due to abundant concrete and tarmac surface cover, therefore heavy rainfall can turn streets into swiftly moving rivers of rainfall run-off.


Flash Floods :-

·  When precipitation in a particular watershed is channelled quickly to the outflow point of the basin, a sudden increase in discharge can be caused. These floods usually occur within 6 hours of a large rainfall event.


FEMA.gov, NOAA.gov, .MACCINFO.com


FEMA.gov, NOAA.gov, .MACCINFO.com