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While preppers, and of course many others, are critically focused on global issues such as the war between Russia and Ukraine, the regular seasonal dangers continue to roll into their places. Right now, that means your attentions for local emergencies should be focused on flooding, as it is a problem faced by many year after year.
The best way to prepare for flooding is strategic relocation. In short, this means move to a location less succeptable to flooding. For those that are homesteading, farming, or living off grid, this can be a bit more tricky than meets the eye. Access to water is important and a serious consideration for land owners. Of course, you want to have access to free flowing water throughout the year. That means that land owners want a pond, river, stream or some other body of water on their property. Lake frontage is also highly desirable. The trick in this case is to ensure that buildings such as your home, barns, stables, sheds and others are far enough away from floodable areas to avoid damage, but close enough to be able to manually transport water from these sources.
The majority of us however, aren’t lucky enough to have land that size and need to be prepared in other ways. Most, will have to evacuate (bug out) in the case of a flood. We’ve seen this multiple times over the past few years. It is of primary importance to maintain situational awareness. Be up to date on local flood warnings and watches. This is one of the few times you can rely on local news sources. When preparing to evacuate, keep the following in mind:
- have a choice of places to go to
- have an evacuation kit ready (check out this article for ideas)
- be ready to leave at a moment’s notice
Sheltering in place may be an option if flooding is not that bad, and there are a few products out there that canhelpprotect your property from minor floods. The first that comes to mind is sand bags. These are popular as an option, but have one drawback…they need to be filled. If you don’t have access to sand for filling, you essentially have stuff sacks. While most municipalities will offer free sand for bagging when floods threaten their territory, this idea doesn’t always work out well. In the past few flood seasons, we’ve witnessed local authorities having supply issues when it comes to sand for residents. Whatever amount does get delivered to specified pick up points quickly dissappears.
If you don’t want to rely on a supply of sand for your sandbags, there is another option. A somewhat new product on the market uses sacks filled with material that absorbs water and expands when wet. Piled up, these products create a barrier when coming in contact with water. One popular brand is gasoline powered water pump is a great way to get rid of flood water that gets by your barrier. Don’t even think about electric pumps. First of all, electricity may not be available. Secondly, water + electricity = ‘nough said. Of course, make sure you have all the hoses and accessories you need to get the job done. The above link is for a complete setup and should get you up and pumping.
In a pinch, you could always try using your snow blower to remove water. This is an actual thing folks. Back in 2019, a Montreal area town used municipal snow blowers to blow water back to outside the sand bag walls. While they of course used very large, street clearing machines, the theory should scale down for home owner use.
Even if you are not in a flood zone, ground water infiltration could be an issue. Make sure your sump pump is in working order and have a backup generator in case of power outages. Don’t forget to keep valuables in lower areas of your home off the floor to prevent loss.