Flood Damage >> Stop A Basement From Flooding

Many people can do a lot of the clean up and repairs discussed in this guide. But if you have technical questions or do not feel comfortable doing something, get professional help.If there is a federal disaster declaration, a telephone "hotline" will often be publicized to provide information about public, private, Stop A Basement From Flooding  nd voluntary agency programs to help you recover. 

Step 1. Take Care of Yourself First You and your family have been through a disaster. Your life has been disrupted and you must allow time for things to return to normal. You should recognize that the flood can take its toll on you as well as your property. Stop A Basement From Flooding

You need to look after yourself and your family while you focus on cleanup and recovery.Play it safe. The dangers are not over when the water goesdown. Your home's foundation may have been weakened, Stop A Basement From Flooding theelectrical system may have shorted out, and floodwaters mayhave left behind things that could make you sick. 

When indoubt, throw it out. Don't risk injury or infection.Watch for signs of stress. Your hidden enemy is stress.Watch for signs of trouble like short tempers, getting upsetover little things, having difficulty sleeping, bad dreams,aches, pains, stomach problems, apathy, Stop A Basement From Flooding and depression. 

Theseare ways your body tells you that times are difficult. Reactionsto stress are common and usually temporary. If you cannotshake feelings of despair or Stop A Basement From Flooding other telltale signs of stress, getprofessional help.Care for your children. Watch your children closely. Youcan expect to see them display fear or symptoms of stress. 

Beunderstanding. Remember, they are going through a roughtime too. Important Health Notes9 Wash your hands thoroughly.This is especially importantbefore eating, cooking, orsmoking.9 Confirm that the water is cleanand safe. Don't drink it or washdishes until you're sure.9 Disinfect dishes and Stop A Basement From Flooding all itemsthat floodwaters touched.9 

Watch out for fatigue. Whenyour body is tired, you aremore prone to accidents, backstrain, and depression.9 Report health hazards. Callyour local health department ifthere are animal carcasses,rats, dangerous chemicals, Stop A Basement From Flooding orother hazards on yourproperty. 

Read the safety precautions on the back cover of this guide. Each year about 150 people diebecause of floods. Many of those fatalities are due to electrocution or other accidents that occurafter the floodwaters have gone down. Your first job is to make sure everything is safe. Stop A Basement From Flooding

Followthese steps:Check with your insurance agent to see if some of your cleanup and repair work is covered. Ifso, you may want to hire professional help for the rest of these steps.Walk around the outside of your house and check for loose power lines and Stop A Basement From Flooding gas leaks. 

You candetect leaking gas by the putrid, rotten egg smell of chemicals that have been added to it to makea leak noticeable. If you find downed lines or leaks, Stop A Basement From Flooding call the power or gas company (see"Important Numbers" inside the front cover). 

Remove tree limbs or other trash that may havelanded on or floated into the house.Check the foundation for cracks or other damage. Examine porch roofs and Stop A Basement From Flooding overhangs to besure they still have all their supports. Look for gaps between the steps and the house. 

If you seeobvious damage, have a building inspector check the house before you go in.Turn off the electricity at your house, even if the power company has turned it off (they mayturn it back on when you're not ready). If you have to go through water to get to your fuse box orbreaker box, if the boxes are wet, Stop A Basement From Flooding or if you're not comfortable with electrical matters, call anelectrician. 

Otherwise, you can follow the instructions on page 18.Turn off the gas. See the instructions on page 19.Go inside carefully. It may be easier to enter your house through a window if the door won'topen easily. Look carefully at the ceiling before you go in to be sure it is not ready to fall. Stop A Basement From Flooding

Do notsmoke or use candles, gas lanterns, Stop A Basement From Flooding or other open flames until the house has been well ventilated.There may be explosive gas.Rescue the most valuable items. Find and protect the "irreplaceables," like money, jewelry,insurance papers, photographs, and family heirlooms. Wash the mud off before they have achance to dry. 

Put them in a safe place like the upper story (if it's dry), Stop A Basement From Flooding a plastic bag, or takethem to a friend's home. Wash the mud off photographs and papers and put them in a freezer forclean up later when you have the time to do a careful job.Keep the damage from getting worse. 

Open the windows and doors (if weather permits) toreduce the moisture and get rid of any gas. Cover holes in the roof, walls, or windows withboards, tarps, or plastic sheeting to keep out the wind and rain.Check for broken or leaking water pipes. If you find any, Stop A Basement From Flooding cut off the water supply by turningoff the valve at your water meter. 

If sewer and water lines are damaged, don't use toilets orsinks. If the water pipes are not leaking, Stop A Basement From Flooding you can use your tap water for hosing things down andcleaning. But do not drink or cook with tap water until the health department declares it safe. 

Drain your basement carefully. Water in the saturatedground puts tremendous pressure on your basement wallsand floors (see the photo on page 8). The water insideyour flooded basement is counteracting this pressure. Ifyou don't follow the instructions in the box for emptyingthe basement gradually, Stop A Basement From Flooding your walls and floor will lose thesupport they need to counteract the pressure from thewater outside. 

The weight of the saturated earth couldthen cause the walls to crack and Stop A Basement From Flooding collapse, buckling thefloors and seriously damaging your home.Get rid of the mud and silt. Most of the health hazardsbrought by a flood are in the mud and silt that is left afterthe water drains away. It is therefore very important toclean it out as soon as possible. 

This is a lot easier if youdo it before the mud dries out. Follow these steps:9 First, shovel out the mud.9 Next, make sure the electricity is turned off. Removeall light bulbs from sockets that have been flooded.Throw away flooded wall switches and outlets. Theyshould be replaced later with new ones.9 Stop A Basement From Flooding

Hose the house down, inside and out. If you have anattachment that sprays soap, wash and then rinse thewalls and floors. Hose the furniture, too, and other majoritems that got muddy.9 Double check that the electricity is off, then thoroughlyhose out the electrical outlets, switch boxes, Stop A Basement From Flooding and lightsockets that you opened up.9 

Don't let the water sit on the floor too long. Mop it upright away, especially if your floor is particle board oranother wood product that tends to fall apart when wet.Clean everything that got wet. Flood waters have picked upsewage and chemicals from roads, farms, factories, Stop A Basement From Flooding andstorage buildings. Spoiled food and flooded cosmetics andmedicines are health hazards. When in doubt, throw themout.

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