Stay Out of the Basement: Post-Flood Safety

scale of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river

Flooding can create extensive damage to your home. Caution is essential when re-entering any structure once flood waters recede. Practice these safety tips to prevent injury and health problems for you and your family.

Be Mindful of Electricity

Water can damage electrical appliances as well as wiring throughout the house. Live wires and water are a disastrous combination, so make sure that the electricity is off before setting foot inside. Have the entire system professionally inspected to identify damage and shorted circuits prior to turning it on. Dry all appliances thoroughly before plugging them back in.

Be Smart About Heat

If you use gas heat, check for a smell inside your home and don’t go in if you detect one. As with the electrical system, your furnace should be inspected for dampness and damage after a flood. Alternative heat may be used in the meantime, but avoid anything that gives off fumes. Place electric heaters well away from water and flammable objects to avoid potential disasters.

Be Wary of Structural Damage

Flooding can cause the floors or walls of your home to buckle and create unexpected sinkholes around your property. Keep an eye out for these and other structural problems as you make your way through the house. If you see any damage to the foundation or the frame, stay out until you can have someone come and do an inspection.

The dampness left behind after a flood may result in the growth of mold, which in turn can cause serious health problems. Start cleanup as soon as possible to prevent a hazardous situation from developing.

Be Discerning About Food

In addition to problems with utilities and home structure, flooding can also ruin a great deal of your food supply. Most types of food containers should be considered a total loss if touched by flood waters. Jars, bottles, boxes, bags and anything with a pop-top should be thrown away. Check the contents of your refrigerator and freezer for food that may have spoiled during long periods without power. Never eat anything with an “off” smell or that came into contact with water. Some commercial canned goods can be disinfected, but if you’re not sure about the safety of a food item, throw it away.

For help reclaiming your home after a flood, contact us at Paul Davis Restoration & Remodeling. We serve homes in the Fort Wayne Indiana area, providing cleanup, restoration and rebuilding after floods and other disasters. You can rely on Paul Davis to return your home to its former condition so that you can get back to your normal routine as soon as possible.