Heavy rain and flooding are threats to numerous communities in the Mid-Atlantic leading up to Hurricane Joaquin's approach to the U.S. late this weekend. The Red Cross is prepared and ready to respond in multiple states and urges people in the path of the storm to get ready too.
Here are 10 easy tips to keep yourself and your family safe:
- Listen to local weather advisories and stay informed about the storm.
- Build an emergency kit or update an existing one.Information about what to include is available here.
- Plan now for what members of the household will do in an emergency. Include ways to contact one another and two places to meet – one near the home and one outside the neighborhood. Full details here.
- Fill your vehicle’s gas tank and get some extra cash.
- If the neighborhood is prone to flooding, prepare to evacuate quickly if necessary.
- If ordered to evacuate, obey the order, avoiding flooded roads and washed out bridges.
- If flooding threatens, head for higher ground and stay there.
- Turn around, don’t drown. If someone comes upon water above their ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. If a roadway is flooded, turn the vehicle around and go another way.
- If caught on a flooded road and the waters are rising rapidly, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
- Be especially cautious at night when it’s harder to see flood danger.
The American Red Cross recommends downloading the free emergency app. This app will allow you or a loved one to reconnect if either of you become separated, if you or your family need shelter, or wish for updates on the emergency.