Flooding and You: Preparation and Recovery


Floods, like most extreme weather, can be unpredictable and happen at a moment’s notice. They are also among the most common natural disasters in the United States every year.

No matter where you live, your home is at risk for flooding. So be aware that most home insurance policies do not cover flood damage. Having flood insurance through Westwood can provide extra protection.

Preparing for what to do before and after a flood event can save you time, money and could save your life. Here are some tips on what to do if a weather event brings flooding.

Before a flood

If you live in an area prone to flooding, or a place where flooding can occur based on seasonal trends, have a plan laid out in advance. Getting together with your family and deciding on a plan of action can save you valuable time if you must evacuate.

It is important to stay on top of news from local authorities regarding any flood watches or warnings for your area. Follow news stations, local papers, government and even your power company on social media and sign up for text alerts if offered.

If you need to evacuate:

  • Have a plan for routes out of your area should any roads become impassable and leave well before the worst of flooding is expected to occur.
  • Bring multiple sets of clothes and anything else you may need for an extended period. Don’t forget medications!
  • Have your most important documents like birth certificates and insurance policies in a folder that can be taken with you.

Sometimes, evacuating is not an option, especially when storms can have devastating effects at a moments notice.

If you are unable to evacuate:

  • Move to a higher floor if available and bring as many items as possible like important documents or medicines.
  • Have ample amounts of food and water on hand, as well as flashlights and a portable radio for updates when electricity is lost.
  • With assistance, raise any furniture off the floor and tie down anything that could float away or cause further damage in the home.

No matter what, protecting life is more important than property during a disaster. Take all precautions to protect yourself and your loved ones.

After a flood

Until floodwaters have receded and local officials have given the green light for people who have evacuated to return, it is important to proceed with caution around your property. There may be exposed electrical wires or other natural hazards that could cause injury or further damage.

Wear protective clothing, footwear and masks when beginning the recovery process. Take pictures or video of all damage suffered throughout the home for insurance purposes.

The recovery process is long and may take days, weeks and even months. Some steps you can take to assist with further work on your home can be:

  • Removing any remaining water and drying the home with air circulation.
  • Discarding any drywall, insulation and other objects that can harbor or promote mold growth.
  • Getting your home inspected and working with a licensed contractor for repairs.

Having a trusted insurance agent can help you during times of crisis like floods. Contact us today and speak with a Westwood agent about how we work with our customers through every type of situation.

Please Note: This article is for general informational and educational purposes only. It does not represent any specific insurance policy and does not modify any provisions, limitations, or exclusions of any current policy.