With the Little Sioux River in Cherokee County again out of its banks in many areas, we once again learn that early spring/summer rains and melting snows up North can and will cause flooding in Iowa and throughout the Midwest.
Currently, we have many rivers and tributaries in the Midwest bank-full or overflowing due to snow melt and recent rains.
What to do? Above all, follow these safety tips:
DURING THE FLOOD
*Monitor the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Weather Radio or your local radio and TV station broadcasts for information.
*If local officials advise evacuation, do so promptly.
*If directed to a specific location, go there.
*Know where the shelters are located.
*Bring outside possessions inside the house or tie them down securely. This includes lawn furniture, garbage cans, and other movable objects.
*If there is time, move essential items and furniture to upper floors in the house. Disconnect electrical appliances that cannot be moved. Do not touch them if you are wet or standing in water.
*If you are told to shut off water, gas, or electrical services before leaving, do so.
*Secure your home: lock all doors and windows.
TRAVEL WITH CARE
*Leave early to avoid being marooned on flooded roads.
*Make sure you have enough fuel for your car.
*Follow recommended routes. Do not sightsee.
*As you travel, monitor NOAA Weather Radio and local radio broadcasts for the latest information.
*Watch for washed-out roads, earth-slides, broken water or sewer mains, loose or downed electrical wires, and falling or fallen objects.
*Watch for areas where rivers or streams may suddenly rise and flood, such as highway dips, bridges, and low areas.
*Do not attempt to drive over a flooded road. Turn around and go another way.
*Do not underestimate the destructive power of fast-moving water. Two feet of fast-moving flood water will float your car. Water moving at two miles per hour can sweep cars off a road or bridge.