Hazards to Watch Out For After a Flood

After flood waters recede it might be necessary to return to your home. Before you do make sure that electrical power, natural gas and propane tanks have all been disabled. This will prevent fire, explosions or electrocution.  Many disaster experts recommend returning to your home during the day so you do not need electricity for lighting.


If you smell gas or suspect a leak leave the house immediately and notify the gas company, fire department or State Marshall’s office. Do not return to the dwelling until it is safe to do so.



You also need to be careful if you see shredded or frayed wires or see small sparks. The smell of burning without seeing a visible fire is as a danger sign. Avoid any power lines, especially those in water.



If you cannot see the water because it is dark or murky then avoid wading through it. This water might contain glass or metal fragments that can really hurt you.



Keep in mind that it might take a while for any restoration of your services to take place. Do not connect generators to your home’s electrical circuits without approved devices.  This can endanger workers working on electrical lines to restore power in your area.


Clean up might also be a big deal.  Make sure that all surfaces are cleaned with soap and water and then disinfected with solution of one cup of bleach to five gallons of water. Make sure fridges, counter tops and shelves are very carefully cleaned.  All linens and clothing should also be washed n very hot water. Items such as mattresses and furniture should be air dried in the sun and the sprayed with a

disinfectant. Steam cleaning carpets and upholstery also helps.



If there has been a back flow of sewage into the4 home then you need to wear goggles, boots and gloves during cleaning. ‘ Be sure to throw out anything that is too contaminated to keep.



If you have moving water in your home than be very careful. It is advisable to leave clean up until this stops because people have been known to drown in even very shallow water.  Another danger is that chemical hazards, debris and batteries could flow your way and cause physical injuries.



Outbreaks of communicable diseases are common after a flood so if you are advised to get an immunization then you should do so. Be sure to that you get shots if your have a wound that is a puncture wound or one that might have been contaminated with saliva or feces.