FEMA Urges Iowans To Prepare For Floods
At the end of today's press conference at City Hall, Cedar Rapids Mayor asked the city council to declare a state of emergency as the impending cresting of flood waters could top 24 feet by Monday evening.
Now FEMA has issued a press release to provide more information for Iowans affected by the impending floods.
“Additional rainfall, even in smaller amounts, when combined with an already saturated ground, could quickly lead to hazardous conditions,” said FEMA Region VII Administrator Beth Freeman. “It’s critical that Iowans prepare now to do what’s needed to be safe in the wake of current and near-term flooding, as well as other severe weather.”
FEMA’s Region VII office in Kansas City, Missouri has been in regular contact with emergency management officials in Iowa as both agencies actively monitor severe weather and flooding in many parts of the state.
“This flooding is a serious situation for many Iowans,” Freeman added. “We can’t stress enough how important it is for citizens to stay informed of ever-changing conditions, to follow official emergency instructions, to have an emergency plan for all members of the family, including pets, and to be ready to quickly put that plan into action.”
Be Informed/Know the Danger:
Keep track of severe weather and flood forecasts, and take them seriously. To do that:
- Monitor newspaper, radio and TV reports of current and predicted weather conditions;
- Keep a NOAA Weather radio turned on and charged up to get alerts around the clock;
- Set mobile devices to alert with the latest weather information. Make it easy by downloading and using a free FEMA app, which provides real-time weather alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations anywhere in Iowa or the nation. The app also provides valuable safety tips to help families prepare for, and recover from, more than 20 natural and man-made hazards, including how to make a family communication plans, a customizable checklist of emergency supplies and maps of open shelters and disaster recovery centers. The app is available on the Apple App Store and on Google Play.
- Gather essential items in one place if evacuation is needed. Those should include:
- Wallets, purses, car/house keys, eyeglasses, cash, credit cards;
- Medicine and basic first-aid supplies;
- Daily living supplies for infants/young children, family members who are elderly or have access and functional needs, and pets;
- Important information such as numbers for bank accounts, insurance policies (health, auto and property) and credit cards;
- Important phone numbers of relatives, employers, schools and medical professionals such as pharmacies, physicians and veterinarians;
- Chargers for mobile devices;
- One or more changes of clothes. Include long pants, socks, boots and/or sturdy shoes;
- Bottled water and high-protein, non-perishable food such as a peanut butter, tuna and nuts.
Know What to Do:
- Understand severe weather terms and know what to do for each.
- Watch means a specific type of threat (flooding, tornadoes) could be forming;
- Warning means take action. Life/property threatening conditions are occurring or imminent.
- Heed emergency instructions. If told to evacuate, go immediately!
- Move immediately to higher ground if flash flooding is possible. Don’t wait to be told. DO NOT DRIVE THROUGH FLOOD WATER, even if you know the road. Turn around, don’t drown!
- Abandon mobile homes. They offer little to no protection, even if tied down.
- Don’t touch downed power lines or objects in contact with downed lines. Report electrical hazards, downed lines and gas leaks to the police and utility companies.
- Don’t re-enter damaged structures without first checking to see if they are safe.