A flooded home is a devastating disaster. Between damaged valuables and the cost of repair, it’s a stressful and overwhelming process. If you’ve had to evacuate your home due to a flood, there are a number of protocols and procedures you should follow when first returning to your home. With some help from the CDC, we’ve put together a list of do’s and don’ts when reentering your flooded home.
- Throw away food and damaged items
If your electricity has gone out, there’s a high chance that the foods in your refrigerator and freezer are no longer safe to consume. If a food item has an odd texture, smell, or color, it’s always best to play it safe and throw it out. The same goes for personal items and furniture as well. If any items within the home are clearly damaged and potentially growing mold, throw them away as soon as possible.
- Use safe water
As we’ve mentioned before, floodwater is often contaminated and can be extremely dangerous. Be sure to follow local guidance when deciding whether or not your drinking water is safe to consume. If you’re unsure, use boiled, bottled, or treated water for brushing teeth, showering, drinking, and more.
- Use caution when turning on electricity
If there is standing water in your home, consult an electrician to turn the main power on or off. Do not attempt to touch the main switch while standing in water as this could cause serious injury. Of course, also make sure all major appliances are completely dried off before attempting to turn them on. If using a generator, make sure that it is not on the line, as it can become a major fire hazard and also endanger utility workers who are working to restore your power.
- Enter during the day or when it’s light outside
Entering your home when it is dark outside poses a lot of problems and can potentially cause more damage or injury. Returning to your home when it’s light outside is not only safer but will allow you to better assess the damage. If you have to return at night when it’s dark, be sure to use battery-operated flashlights and lanterns. Do NOT use torches or candles.
Regardless of the amount of damage, flood cleanup can be tricky. It’s important to call in the professionals to assess the damage, look for mold, and make sure your home is safe enough for you and your family to return. Our technicians are IICRC certified and are ready to help get your flooded home back to feeling like paradise.