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How to Prepare for a Flooding Emergency

As the days get shorter and darker, it’s easy to enjoy the coziness of spending evenings indoors, especially after days spent out in the brisk cold. But it’s less enjoyable to deal with complications, as the rainy season descends and floods become all too common.

Floods are Canada’s most frequent natural disaster. As much as they can happen any time of year, the risk increases during times of heavy and consistent rainfall.

There are also a few other contributing factors:

  • rapid melting of thick snow pack
  • ice jams
  • the failure of a natural or man-made dam

To prevent as much damage as possible, try the following:

  • Put weather protection sealant around basement windows and the base of ground level doors.
  • Purchase flood barriers like Quick Dam’s sandless sandbags or flood barriers, which will absorb up to 32 pounds of freshwater in 5 minutes by forming a gel that blocks water.  
  • If you have a basement, it’s best to install a sump pump.
  • Call your electricity or fuel supplier, and get their advice on how to proceed in the case of a flood.

Plan a to-do list for when a flood is in the forecast, because time will be of the essence!

Make sure you create your own list, based on your living situation, but feel free to use these tips as a starting guideline:

  • Turn off basement furnaces.
  • Turn off outside gas valves.
  • Protect your heating equipment.
  • Move furniture and electrical appliances to an upper floor.
  • Remove toxic materials from the area to avoid pollution.
  • Disconnect eavestroughs if they are attached to the house sewer.
  • Plug basement sewer drains and toilet connections with wooden stoppers.
  • If it’s necessary to evacuate your home, make sure you only return to it once the authorities have said it’s safe to do so.

For more information on what to do once the flood is upon you, read up on safety procedures here!


Article contributed by Sophie Wooding – Avid gardener and cyclist in Victoria, BC and Content Writer for Frontier.io

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