People can prepare for the certainty of floods by several simple means. The first step is to have a disaster kit stored at home. A kit should contain:
o Weather-radio tuned to the emergency frequencies, powered by batteries or by hand-cranked
o FM/AM radio, powered by batteries or hand-cranked
o First-aid kit with enough supplies for a week
o Flashlights, either battery or hand-cranked
o Simple hand tools, such as hammers, screwdrivers and pliers, to turn off any utilities and to use after the flood recedes
o Whistles, mirrors and other survival notification devices
o Simple face masks to shield against dust and fumes
o Local road maps
o Cell or mobile phone with chargers and inverters
o Solar or hand-cranked electrical power source to re-charge small devices
o Supply of non-perishable food for at least three days
o Personal sanitation supplies, such as small plastic bags, moist towelettes, large garbage bags and plastic ties
You should also have some supplies in the kit that will require periodic cycling of old it ems out and new supplies in, such as fresh water. Remember, water in sealed plastic or glass jugs may be drinkable for only a few months at most. Canned food usually has a Use-By date stamped on the can — remember to pack a hand-cranked can opener with any canned goods.
If you are in an area prone to floods, you might consider permanently moving your furnace and hot water heater higher up in the building so that that these devices do not become submerged during a flood. The same concept is true for the electrical panel for the house. Try these home improvements yourself only if you are licensed to do so. Otherwise, hire a contractor.