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Flood Recovery

Flood Recovery: What to Know

By | Flood Info

Recovery after any flood is difficult, whether you’re suffering from the catastrophic devastation caused by Hurricane Michael or your home was damaged by a small local flood. It can be extraordinarily difficult to accomplish all that needs to be done, but establishing a clear set of priorities is helpful.

Warning!

You’ve been anxiously waiting to go home, but don’t go in until you’re sure it’s safe.

  • Wear boots or sturdy shoes, eye protection, and heavy gloves. In addition to dangers such as broken construction materials, jagged metal, and glass, watch for snakes, red or fire ants, and other dangerous animals.
  • Check for structural damage before entering.
  • Wear a respirator capable of filtering mold spores if mold is present.
  • Be sure the gas and electricity are turned off and there are no gas leaks. Use only lights powered by batteries.
  • Open windows, doors, closet, and cabinet doors to ventilate home and reduce humidity. If possible, run air conditioner or heater, fans, and dehumidifiers.
  • Remove valuable belongings and clear debris.
  • Do what you can to minimize further damage: Tarp or repair roof and damaged floors, patch holes, and check for leaking water pipes.
  • Pump out basement very carefully. If soil surrounding the basement is still saturated, hydrostatic loads can cause the walls and floors to collapse or crack.
  • NEVER combine chlorine bleach with vinegar, ammonia or household cleaning products as the combination could create toxic fumes.

How Water Damages to Your Home

Many elements of your home are particularly vulnerable to floodwater damage.

  • Wallboard will disintegrate when wet for too long
  • Wood cabinets, doors, window frames, molding, and flooring will warp, swell and decay
  • Electrical components can shock you or cause fires

Mold and Contaminants

  • Mold spreads very quickly after a flood. Breathing in the mold spores can cause a number of serious health issues. Respirators are recommended.
  • Many common household products can be used to clean mold from surfaces. Moldpedia, among others, publishes instructions on various do-it-yourself mold removal methods.
  • Floodwater contains many unknown and potentially dangerous contaminants. Use bottled water for drinking, cooking, and other purposes until wells or public water sources are tested and pronounced safe.

Care for Your Family and Yourself

Your greatest source of strength is your family. Stay together.

  • Everyone is stressed but will react differently. Don’t hesitate to ask for help.
  • Establish a workable schedule.
  • Hold family meetings to talk about your problems, letting all family members express their concerns. Reassure your children and be patient.

Stay Healthy

Make mental and physical health a top priority.

  • Expect floodwaters to be contaminated. Contact with the water should be avoided by those with health issues, pregnant women, and young children.
  • Everything, especially dishes and cooking utensils, should be disinfected.
  • Wash hands thoroughly and frequently with clean water and soap.
  • Try to avoid being injured as any wound can easily become infected.
  • Pay attention to your physical limitations and take or obtain necessary prescription medications.

Financial Assistance

There are several sources of financial assistance.

1. Insurance

  • Contact your insurance agent(s) and your mortgage holder.
  • Homeowners insurance normally covers wind losses and broken water pipes.
  • Flood insurance covers floodwater losses.
  • Wind and hail insurance protects residents of coastal areas from hurricane losses.
  • Ask about coverage for hotels, rental cars, and other living expenses.
  • Find out details on the claims process and when an adjuster will be assigned. Take photos and begin a list of your damages. Separate damaged from undamaged items. Collect receipts and other proofs of purchase.
  1. Government Disaster ProgramsState and/or federal aid programs become available after your community has been declared a disaster area by your governor, the President, or a federal agency. Check with your local government for details on applying for state disaster relief programs.Presidential disaster declarations enable many federal disaster relief programs including:
  • Loans
  • Housing assistance
  • Grants
  • Deductions on income taxes
  • Counseling
  • Assistance with floodproofing your home
  1. Volunteer GroupsVolunteers from the Salvation Army, the American Red Cross, and churches are often among the first to offer help after a disaster. They typically help with immediate flood recovery needs such as clothing, shelter, food, medical aid, and counseling.Neptune Flood is committed to providing the best flood insurance available today. Obtain a quote in minutes – you’ll be surprised by the high limits, additional coverage, and affordable price. Compare Neptune’s coverage to traditional government flood insurance and see for yourself. Backed by some of the world’s largest insurance markets, Neptune Flood offers the flood insurance you need.

    Visit #LifeWaterproofed today.

Flood Causes

Flood Causes

By | Flood Info

Floods are the #1 natural disaster in the U.S. and worldwide. Damage from floodwaters surpasses the losses caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, or earthquakes – as horrifying and powerful as those catastrophic events are.

The simplest definition of a flood is a large overflow of water onto land that is usually dry. Floods can appear and recede as quickly as it happens with a flash flood. The most catastrophic floods linger for some time, causing loss of life and irreparable damage.

What Causes a Flood?

Flood prevention is a matter of great concern. Floods are primarily a natural phenomenon, but human actions, such as poorly designed infrastructure, can set the stage for a later flood. Understanding the causes is essential to either flood prevention or reducing future flood damage.

Most floods are the result of one of the eight following causes, some natural and some the result of human actions.

1. Heavy Rainfall

For many years, people have designed their infrastructure to move rainwater from where it falls to reservoirs and basins. Most of the time, the system works. No one other than those who support the infrastructure gives a second thought to where the water goes.

Occasionally, a very heavy rain will be too much for the system to handle. The water accumulates faster than it can be taken away. Streets flood. Homes and businesses are flooded by the rising water.

2. Overflowing Rivers

It’s entirely possible to experience river floods without heavy rainfall in your area. People living near rivers are very aware of the fact that if a large storm dumps tremendous quantities of water into the river upstream, then that excess water will flow downstream. This type of flood can be catastrophic but is often predictable and manageable.

Perhaps the best example of this type of flood took place annually in Egypt for thousands of years. The annual flooding of the Nile was a much-anticipated event. The floodwaters left behind incredibly fertile soil that grew the crops needed for trade and to feed their entire civilization.

3. Broken Dams and Levees

Broken dams can cause an incredible amount of damage. In the U.S., most dams and levees were built many years ago. When faced with more water than they can handle, these structures fail, releasing raging waters upon anything in its path. While our infrastructure normally works very well, any structure could potentially fail.

During Hurricane Katrina, the aging levees broke, changing countless lives forever. Thirteen years later, sections of New Orleans’s Ninth Ward still resemble a crumbling ghost town. The story would have been much different if the levees had held.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889 left 2,209 people dead after the South Fork Dam failed. A vast quantity of water exploded through the breaking dam, rushing 14 miles downstream where it totally destroyed the town of Johnstown. Investigation of the disaster eventually resulted in changes to dam management and the U.S. legal system.

4. City Drainage Basins

Many large cities, such as Los Angeles, build concrete drainage basins to contain and manage rainwater. When the rain is especially heavy, the basins can fill up and overflow into low-lying areas.

5. Storm Surges and Tsunamis

Storm surge is one of the most dangerous effects of a hurricane. Powerful winds push water toward the shore, creating life-threatening storm surges that can rage over the tops of homes, sweeping away everything in its path. During Hurricane Katrina, a 34.1 foot High Water Mark was recorded, consisting of a 22 feet high storm surge combined with a 1-foot tide and 11-foot waves. If you live in a two-story house, this storm surge would have totally engulfed your home, crashing over the roof.

Underwater earthquakes can create monstrous waves known as tsunamis. The tsunami that devastated Indonesia in 2004 killed 227,898 people.

6. Lakes, Rivers, and Reservoirs With Steep Sides

A fast runoff of water in a steep-sided narrow channel will rise quickly. This can occur with either natural or man-made channels.

7. Drought and Desert Areas

Trees, shrubs, and other vegetation help to prevent floods by slowing runoff. When there is little vegetation, such as in a desert or drought, the water flows unchecked. A heavy rainfall after a drought can result in a flash flood. Fortunately, reservoirs and basins are normally able to prevent this. In areas where nothing exists to divert the water, flash floods can prove deadly.

8. Melting Ice and Snow

Most people who live near mountains are prepared for spring floods as the snow melts and creates ever-larger streams rushing down the mountain. If there was a much heavier than average snowfall, they know they can expect higher than average water levels and possible floods.

In 2017, the year of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, the average insurance claim after a flood was $91,735. 2018 has also seen substantial flooding. After the recent Florence floods, people living 200 miles from the ocean were flooded. Many never expected to be flooded and had no flood insurance.

Could you afford to rebuild your home and replace all your belongings? Neptune Flood offers peace of mind from the unexpected. If you live in a designated flood zone, your mortgage holder requires flood insurance. However, as happened this year, devastating floods can happen in areas where flooding isn’t anticipated. Also, many homeowners with no mortgages don’t carry flood insurance.

Get a flood insurance quote from Neptune Flood in less than three minutes. Discover how affordable it is. Knowing you’re covered will let you sleep at night.

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Flood Map: What is It?

By | Uncategorized

In August 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue. He never would have been able to navigate that blue ocean and its hidden dangers, shifting tides, and deadly currents, without a map. The same theory applies to flood waters, whose risks can be charted by modern flood maps. These maps keep communities abreast of local flood possibilities. Here is some information about flood maps and how they can keep your head above water:

WHAT ARE FLOOD MAPS?

Flooding is the United States’ primary natural disaster. Hurricane Florence characterized the utter devastation that flooding can cause. However, even a few inches of water can ruin your home and its contents. (A six-inch-deep creek can explode into 10 feet of raging river in only one hour.) Flood insurance rate maps (FIRMs), created by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), inform your community about the region’s potential flood risks.

WHO USES FLOOD MAPS?

Flood maps are used by a wide variety of people and organizations. Private Citizens, realtors, and insurance agents use them to locate properties in flood insurance danger zones. Community leaders use them to enforce flood management stipulations and intercept flood damage. Federal agencies and lenders use them to decide whether or not flood insurance is necessary for loans, grants, and building construction.

DO FLOOD MAPS AFFECT INSURANCE?

Yes. A flood map determines the cost of insurance so that homeowners can financially gird themselves against costs incurred by flooding. If your degree of risk is low, your insurance premiums will also be low. Flood insurance may be mandatory in high-risk areas. Neptune Flood will use our cutting-edge fusion of technology and insurance expertise to guide you through the complexities of flood insurance selection.

DO THEY MAP REAL FLOODS?

No. They are maps of hypothetical floods, which help residents understand the areas that may be particularly susceptible to flooding.

WHAT TECHNOLOGIES ARE USED TO CREATE FLOOD MAPS?

• LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) — LIDAR simulates flow for the entire floodplain in two dimensions. This technology provides an accurate representation of where water will travel during a flood.

• TRIMR2D Computer Model — This computer program is called a flow model because it solves equations that detail the physics of fluid flow. TRIMR2D can compute equations for large areas, as well as ones that have fast flow shifts.

• Geographic Information System (GIS) — GIS is a cutting-edge technology that can be thought of as computer cartography. It pinpoints areas that are likely to be flooded, when the flood will occur, the potential water depth, and when the flood waters will peak.

WHAT TYPES OF FLOOD MAPS ARE THERE?

• Online — These are the most user-friendly flood maps. Simply go to FEMA’s digital service center, and type in your entire address. Their system will generate a highly detailed topographical on-screen flood map, along with a precise legend regarding your area’s flood risk.

• Paper — Paper flood maps specific to your community can be obtained at your local government’s zoning or planning office. One type of paper flood map is called a flat map, with multiple panels that you must assemble yourself. The other type is a one-piece Z-fold map, which resembles a folding road map.

CAN FLOODS BE PREDICTED?

They can, but not via flood maps. Prediction requires the following:

• Assessment of the amount of water falling, in real time.

• Observing the changes in the river’s height, in real time. This can foreshadow the potency of the danger and when it will hit a certain region.

• Ascertaining the storm’s duration, size and intensity. This can help predict the fierceness of a potential flood.

• Cognizance of such things as soil-moisture, ground temperature, snowpack and vegetation in forecasting a flood’s destructiveness.

WHAT TYPES OF FLOODS ARE THERE?

There are two types of floods: river floods and flash floods. As their name implies, flash floods cause greater loss of life because they leave their victims with little or no time to prepare or escape. River floods, on the other hand, typically cause more property loss because lives are spared but belongings are not. Most floods are caused by some sort of storm.

• Flash flood — This type of flood occurs when a storm’s runoff causes water height to swiftly rise. Flash floods typically happen in areas without enough soil or vegetation to obstruct the water.

• River flood — River flooding is triggered when runoff from severe rainstorms cause waters to slowly rise over a large area. They can also be caused by high tides or ice jams.

Flood maps are an excellent tool for increasing awareness of potential flood danger. They’re not perfect, though. Twenty-five percent of all flood claims are located outside of the “high risk” zones. At Neptune Flood of Pinellas Park, Florida, we offer affordable flood coverage that innovatively merges technology, math algorithms and insurance expertise. Please contact us to discuss how we can waterproof your life.

 

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Flood Insurance Misconceptions

By | Flood Info

There are several misconceptions when it comes to flood insurance. With the threat of hurricanes as well as flooding, Neptune Flood wants you to be aware of these common misconceptions when it comes to insuring your home and its contents. Costly flooding can happen even without a hurricane, so it is best to be educated first.

You don’t want to make the mistake of not having enough insurance if your home is flooded, regardless of the reason. Being educated as well as being prepared for flooding can save you time, money, and frustration in the long run.

Misconception #1: Flood damage is covered by homeowners’ insurance.
Correct fact: Covered in a regular home insurance policy is damage from water leakage, a hole in the roof or a leaking pipe. Flood damage is NOT covered. The difference is that flood water is “rising water” and is not considered the same as what is covered under water damage. You need to have separate flood insurance to ensure that your home and its contents are protected in the event of flooding from storm surge or even rainfall that is torrential; separate insurance covers the home and contents in the event of flooding.

Misconception #2: The NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program) is the only place to buy insurance against flooding.
Correct fact: Private carriers can insure you as well. Neptune Flood is a private carrier who can offer a certified flood endorsement to ensure that everything is covered. Such things as mold damage, swimming pools, hot tubs, and temporary housing are not covered by the NFIP.

Misconception #3: Only those who live in a flood zone need high-risk flood coverage.
Correct fact: The actual fact is that flooding happens in all 50 states and is the most common type of natural disaster. Everyone across the country should be aware of flooding. In fact, one-third of disaster relief from floods goes to residents outside of high-risk flood zones. The FEMA website lists those in high-risk areas; however outside of those areas, as mentioned by FloodSmart, you may need to have additional insurance for flooding. Remember that it takes only an inch of water from flooding to incur thousands of dollars in damage. View the chart to see where there have been claims for flooding in the United States. You will learn that spring and fall storms, as well as torrential rains in the middle of the country, have caused major problems. Both Georgia and Tennessee have experienced this type of rain.

Misconception#4: Only storms cause floods.
Correct fact: Flooding can be caused by dams breaking as well as a difference in water flow above ground and below it. One example is flooding from snow melting.

According to FEMA, no home is completely safe from potential devastation from flooding. Even if your home is not in a high-risk flooding area, your mortgage lender may require that you have it.

Final Thoughts on Insurance for Flooding
That special shed that you built in the back of your house may not be covered by NFIP. Coverage can include this and any other unattached buildings. Your temporary living expenses are important if your home is flooded; that itself is a good reason to have coverage for this added expense.

At Neptune Flood, we want you to be prepared, with more of your assets covered in a policy that might include replacement cost, temporary living expense, basement contents, pool repair/refill, and detached structures. Higher limits of coverage can be included in your policy. With only a ten day waiting period, as opposed to 30 days under NFIP, it makes sense to investigate this insurance option. Our technology could save you some serious money, so it pays to look into our coverage for your home and surroundings if flooding occurs.

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Flood Water Health Risks

By | Flood Info

After a hurricane or flood has passed, you may be vulnerable to health risks from the flood waters. At Neptune Flood, we want you to be aware of what may be in the water that you are walking in, as well as drink. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), standing water poses a variety of threats to health which you know about.

Stomach Distress

If you eat or drink anything that has been contaminated by the water caused by flooding, you are vulnerable to diarrhea. Protection against such unwanted microbes includes:

  • Wash hands after coming in contact with flood water.
  • Do not let kids play in the water from flooding.
  • Wash kids’ hands frequently.
  • Toys that have been contaminated by the waters should not be played with until they are disinfected.

Wound Risks

Open wounds that have come in contact with the waters can become infected. You can protect yourself and your family by following these steps:

  • If you have an open wound, avoid exposure to the waters.
  • A clean and open wound should be covered with a waterproof bandage.
  • Wash wounds with soap and clean water to keep them as clean as possible.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if a wound is red, has swelling or is draining.

Other Health Effects

When the feet are wet or have been in the water for long periods of time, Trench Foot or Immersion Foot can develop. Although it is painful, this condition can be treated and, even better, prevented. Tingling, itching, pain, swelling, blotchiness, and cold skin may be symptoms.
To protect yourself, you should:

  • Dry and clean feet thoroughly.
  • Wear clean and dry socks.
  • Soak affected feet in warm water, between 102° to 110° F for five minutes.
  • Do not wear socks when sleeping.
  • Obtain medical attention promptly.

Having a wound as well may increase the possibility of infection. Check your feet daily for symptoms that are becoming worse.

Hazards From Chemicals

Because flood waters may have moved containers of chemicals or solvents from their usual storage areas, you should be aware of potential hazards.

Drowning

Water after flooding contains potential drowning risks for everyone, even the best of swimmers. Moving swiftly, water can also be deadly. Standing water that is shallow can also be a dangerous hazard for small children.

Vehicles can be swept away and do not provide protection from flooded waters; they can also easily stall out.

Electrical Hazards

Downed wires can be dangerous and should be avoided. Additionally, power should be turned off if water has been near electrical circuits and equipment. Do not turn it back on until electrical equipment and circuits have been inspected by a qualified electrician.

Follow any included directions for a portable generator for safety.

Insect Wounds and Animal Bites

The waters may contain animals, insects, and reptiles that have been displaced. Walking through water, you should be alert and, if possible, avoid contact. More information for dealing with bites from animals and insects can be found here.

Preventing Wounds

Since flooding waters can contain sharp objects or metal and glass fragments, care should be taken to avoid any objects that can cause a wound that might lead to infection.

Drinking Water

Water may not be safe for drinking. Before the disaster, you should have bottled water on hand as an emergency supply. Water with germs can sometimes be made safe to drink through boiling and disinfecting. However, if the water has been exposed to hazardous chemicals, it will still not be safe to drink.

These are some of the hazards and risks to think about after the advent of flooding. Before the flooding occurs, you should think about adequate insurance to replace items that may have been damaged or lost. Neptune Flood is here to help you with insurance that is backed by Lloyds, one of the largest insurance markets in the world. Maps and technology will help you find the right insurance for your area. With knowledge of avoiding risks and insurance from Neptune Flood, you can be prepared if any flooding does happen.

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FEMA: What is it?

By | Flood Info

What Exactly is FEMA?

People often ask, just what is FEMA? The term stands for Federal Emergency Management Association. We at Neptune Flood Insurance want to help you understand what this government agency is and how they are involved in emergencies, such as hurricanes or flooding.

History

The first response by Congress to known emergency legislation began in the year 1803, as the government extended the time for the remittance of payment for tariffs to merchants. This was after a devastating series of fires that affected the city of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Considered by many as the first piece of Congressional legislation to provide disaster relief, other efforts were made after that time.

The present agency began with two presidential orders in the year 1978. Its main purpose is the coordination of response to a United States disaster after it has occurred. These disasters often overwhelm state and local resources and help from the United States government is needed.

State governments, through the order of the governor, must declare a state of emergency as well as ask the president that a federal response is given. On-the-ground disaster recovery support is a major part of FEMA’s work; the agency also provides knowledgeable experts in specialized fields as well as funding for the rebuilding efforts to state and local governments. Offering access to low-interest loans, the organization works with the Small Business Administration.

Additionally, funds are given for the training of personnel for preparedness throughout the United States.

After a Flood

FEMA was placed under the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, after the attacks on September 11, 2001.

After the devastating floods from Hurricane Katrina in 2005, it became evident that the government was not giving as much attention to natural disasters, as testified by emergency management professionals. At that point, they felt that the nation needed preparedness and was more vulnerable to such natural events as hurricanes.

Even with calls to separate the agency, today the Federal Emergency Management Agency is a very large agency and still a part of the Department of Homeland Security.

What Assistance is Provided for Floods?

FEMA grants may be provided to those who suffer severe damage to homes, vehicles or personal property from flooding. Assistance after the disaster may include grants to help pay for emergency home repairs and temporary housing as well as for uninsured and under-insured personal property losses. Disaster-related medical, dental and funeral expenses, as well as other serious disaster-related expenses, may also be eligible for assistance.

The National Flood Insurance Program

Helping to reduce the impact of flooding on public and private homes and businesses, this Federal Emergency Management Agency program offers affordable insurance. It prompts property owners, renters, and businesses by encouraging communities to adopt and enforce floodplain management regulations.

Effects of flooding are mitigated on newer structure, and the economic and social impacts of a flood are lessened through the promotion of affordable insurance for flooding damage.

At Neptune Flood, we can answer your questions regarding the insurance you may need to be fully prepared for an emergency. Because our nerds work tirelessly to provide solutions, you don’t have to. We are backed by Lloyds, one of the largest insurers in the world, and have great products to make the purchase of insurance simple and easy.

Millions of Americans are now saving up to 25% off the cost of their insurance, due to the use of technology. Using satellites and LiDAR and IfSAR (light detection and remote sensing radar) technology, Neptune Flood creates maps to help with the identification of the true cost of buying insurance. Get a quote or browse our site to learn more about how you can be prepared.

 

 

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Hurricane Preparation Before the Storm

By | Flood Info

You’ve heard the weather reports, checked out the National Weather Service and know that a hurricane is heading your way. At this point, hopefully, you have flooding insurance in place and do not have to think about that. Neptune flood wants to make sure that you know how to get ready when a hurricane threatens, so here are some tips to help you prepare. These suggestions have been listed according to a time frame.

Prepare
What you can do now:

  • Know your area’s risk
  • Sign up for a community warning system
  • Watch for heavy rain, if you are at risk for flash floods
  • Think about your plans for sheltering in place or evacuation
  • Know evacuation routes, evacuation zones and the location of shelters
  • Gather supplies, medications and pet needs
  • Safeguard important papers or place them in a password-protected digital place
  • Protect your property. Clean drains and gutters and install check valves in plumbing. If you have hurricane shutters be prepared to use them
  • Review your insurance policies in case of damage or flood

36 Hours Ahead
According to the government, 36 hours ahead of the hurricane you should:

  • Be ready to get the latest updates; turn on TV or radio
  • Restock your emergency kit
  • Plan how to communicate with family if power fails
  • Review evacuation routes, evacuation zones and the location of shelters
  • Keep your car in good working order and fill up with gas
  • Put emergency supplies in the car as well as a change of clothes

18 to 36 Hours Ahead

  • Bookmark the list of county resources so it is handy
  • Bring in outdoor furniture and anything that could fly and hit something in high wind
  • Anchor objects such as propane tanks
  • Trim trees that are close to the house
  • Activate storm shutters or put 5/8” exterior-grade or marine plywood on windows

6 to 18 Hours Ahead

  • Turn on TV and radio for instructions
  • Charge your cell phone in case of power loss

6 Hours Ahead

  • If not recommended or ordered to evacuate, plan on staying put and not going out. Let friends know where you are
  • Close storm shutters; stay away from the windows
  • Turn refrigerator to coldest setting in case of power loss. Before eating food when power is restored, check the food temperature
  • Turn on TV or radio or check the website in your county every 30 minutes in order to get updates

If you are given an evacuation order, do it immediately. Remember to not drive around any barricades, as there could be flooding.

These steps, as well as the purchasing of flooding insurance, can make the event of a hurricane less stressful. By preparing months ahead of time as well as hours before, it will be less chaotic, and fewer things will be forgotten or neglected. We have additional information on the Neptune Flood blog on flood preparedness. Because a hurricane also involves high winds, additional precautions should be taken.

Consult a document given out by your county to find out about which evacuation zone you live in, so you know ahead of time whether you might have to leave. If you are going to stay. If you have a pet, know where the nearest pet-friendly shelter is if you do have to evacuate.

Using space-age technology, Neptune Flood can help you be prepared for a hurricane or flood. With the ability to buy flooding insurance in less than three minutes, why not be ready.

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Flood Shelter Survival Tips

By | Flood Info

If you are in an area that is going to flood, you may have been told to evacuate. This could mean gathering up pets and belongings for a few days at the shelter. Preparing for the shelter as well as preparing your home with flooding insurance is a wise thing to do.

Even if you intend to stay at a motel, roads may be blocked or they are filled up, which often happens when a disaster is pending. Staying with friends is another option, but if that is not possible, you have no choice other than to stay in a local shelter provided by the county or city. But how to survive the shelter?

Here are some tips from Neptune Flood, gained from advice and experience.

Pets
If you have pets, the first thing to do is to locate a pet-friendly shelter. Be sure that the shelter you choose is open; once you have found the one closest to you, you will need to get ready. Some things you will need include:

  • Pet food for 3 days, manual can opener and dish or dry food
  • Water and water bowl
  • Crate or cat carrier for each pet
  • Leash for dogs or litter box, scoop, and litter for cats
  • Disposable bags for cleanup
  • Pet Medications
  • Favorite toys and a blanket
  • Snacks
  • Proof of up-to-date immunization

Note: Some advocates for pets suggest a two-week supply of food and medication.

Be aware that many shelters do not allow a pet that is not in a crate or carrier. Often a shelter will have a separate room, one for dogs and one for cats; they will be staying in their crate or carrier most of the time. Dogs can be walked outside with a leash. Yes, you can visit with Rover or kitty while staying at the shelter. Those snacks or treats (for your pet) can help reduce the stress of being in a dorm of furry friends.

As a guardian of your fur friend, you must be staying at the shelter as well; no drop-offs. In some shelters, you may be able to have your pet next to you during your stay.

If possible, at least for a cat or small animal, have a carrier that has wheels, as it will save you some effort while waiting in lines to check in or coming from the parking lot.

Shelter Tips
Here are some basic tips for your stay at the shelter.

  • Do not bring jewelry or valuables
  • No illegal drugs, firearms or alcohol
  • Watch children at all times
  • Do not enter restricted areas
  • Courtesy rules!
  • Report suspicious behavior to nearby police in the shelter
  • Keep noise to a minimum

Remember to bring a blanket and padding for under your “bed”. If you do not want to stay in a dorm with many people, see if you can camp in another room or hallway. Here are some tips on what to bring to the shelter:

  • Medications
  • Non-perishable food
  • Gallons of drinking water
  • Bedding
  • Child necessities
  • Hygiene items
  • Change of clothes
  • Quiet games
  • Valid ID and important papers
  • Eyeglasses or spare contacts
  • Phone list and cash

Pack light, since this is not a vacation or a cruise ship, just a lifeboat. You will have a small space, possibly 5 feet by 2 feet, that will be your home during the flood.

Staying at a shelter requires courtesy; you may be among people that range from the rich genteel to those without a home. You will be dining with a group in a cafeteria or you can take food back to your “room”; you may even make some new friends. Being open to the experience, and having gratitude for the shelter, is making the best of the situation.

You can bring some food that is non-perishable as well as snacks. Have reading materials and a computer tablet if you have one. Remember to bring your charging cords and phones plus extra batteries for flashlights. Some people even bring beach chairs, as they enjoy sitting and talking to others or just chilling-out, making the best of it.

Flooding insurance will add peace-of-mind in case you ever have to stay at a shelter during a storm or flooding. We at Neptune Flood know that recovery from flooding can take a while; being prepared for floods as well as for a stay at a shelter will make for less stress when an evacuation is necessary.

 

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Flood Warning: Evacuate or Stay?

By | Flood Info

If it’s been raining for several days and flooding is imminent, you will probably be asking if you should evacuate if a flood warning is given. Neptune Flood wants you to become aware of what your options are, should this troublesome event occur. Whether to leave or stay is best learned through knowing some simple facts.

Shelter in Place 
If you live in a sound structure, not a mobile home or RV, and are outside an evacuation area, stay at home. There are some simple things you can do to prepare for the storm or flooding.
Before the Flood:

  • Be alert
  • Have a family disaster plan
  • Be prepared to evacuate
  • Assemble disaster supplies and pet needs
  • Assemble medications
  • Move valuables to a higher level
  • Make sure drains are cleared
  • Keep important papers in a waterproof container
  • Buy extra batteries and have cell phones charged
  • Learn about evacuation routes
  • Do not drive through flooded waters

You can find out more about your flood risk by going to the FEMA service center page. You might also sign up for your community alert system; the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio will give emergency alerts.
Determine the best way to protect your family. If you receive a flood warning:

  • Stay where you are
  • Move to a higher floor
  • Evacuate if told to do so

Evacuation Order 
If you are told to leave, don’t panic. Move at a steady pace to ensure you get to where you need to be during the flooding. If an evacuation order is given, do not take chances by staying home until it may be too late. Do the following:

  • Make sure that your destination is not one that is in an evacuation zone
  • Take enough supplies for the family
  • Take your pets and supplies for them
  • Take important papers, insurance policies and agent’s name, special medical information
  • Take photos or irreplaceable items
  • Let friends and family know where you are going
  • Check on neighbors to make sure they have a safe ride
  • Lock doors and windows
  • Turn off electricity, water, and gas if told to do so

Leaving a Coastal Area 
You may only need to go “tens of miles, not hundreds of miles” to escape the storm surge. Roads may be congested, so avoiding the highway is probably the best bet if you are leaving. Remember to bring supplies with you. If you are planning on staying in a hotel or motel, make sure that it is not in a flood zone!

It is hoped that you have previously chosen a safe location to go to during flooding. If you have to leave, do so immediately and do not drive around barricades. Do not swim or walk through flooded waters. The saying is, “Turn Around. Don’t Drown!”

If you become trapped in your vehicle in flooded waters, go to the roof if water is entering the interior.

Learn more about what you can do during a flood warning at the government website. Regardless of whether you stay or leave during a flood, a major point is to make sure that you have flood insurance before the disaster occurs. If you do have to leave your home in the event of flooding, you can have peace-of-mind, knowing that your home is covered. Neptune Flood can help you with affordable coverage that is backed by one of the largest insurance markets in the world. Using the latest technology, Neptune Flood brings the cost of flood insurance down to help every American homeowner.

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Flood Tips for your Home

By | Flood Info

Knowing what to do after a flood can help make the recovery process a little easier. Even a small, local flood can be devastating for those involved. Yet, catastrophes tend to bring out the best in people as friends and neighbors help each other out.

It doesn’t take a lot of water, sometimes as little as one or two inches, to severely damage your home and belongings. The deeper the water, the more structural damage, up to and including the roof. You’ll want to begin the cleanup as soon as possible, but don’t return until the authorities allow it.

Call Your Insurance Agent

Notify your insurance agent as soon as possible to get information on submitting a claim and when you’ll be contacted by an adjuster. Find out what services are covered, such as professional cleanup and restoration. You’ll need a complete record of the damage for your insurance company, to apply for disaster assistance (find out if a disaster was officially declared for your area) and for a tax deduction.

Take Pictures

You’ll want to take pictures of the inside and outside of the building and damaged items before and during the cleanup. Digital pictures are best since they can be safely stored in the “cloud” and attached to your claim. When you’re resettled in your home, take pictures periodically as part of a home inventory.

You’ll Need Food, Water, Flashlights, Batteries, Household Cleaners and Bleach When You Return Home

  • If you have a well, assume the water is contaminated until you have it checked by a well or pump contractor. Many people need professional help to restart and disinfect their wells, but EPA offers a good well how-to for do-it-yourselfers.
  • If you have city water, it will be restored as soon as possible.
  • Boil water until your water is declared safe.
  • Most food left behind will be contaminated. Canned food should still be safe to eat, but don’t open the can until disinfecting the outside. Throw out damaged cans.
  • Power will be out, so you’ll need flashlights. Bring as many batteries as you can. Use ONLY battery-powered lights to avoid igniting any flammable material.
  • You’ll need a lot of heavy-duty cleaners and bleach.

Don’t Enter Your Home Until it’s Safe

  • Wait until the authorities say it’s safe to return.
  • Check for structural damage, including cracks in the foundation, walls, windows, and ceilings.
  • Look for damaged water or sewer lines.
  • Use extreme caution at all times.
  • Wear sturdy boots or shoes – cut feet are among the most common injuries.
  • Watch for snakes or other unfriendly wildlife.

Turn Off the Power

Even if the power lines are down, make sure that all power is turned off at the main circuit breaker as long as you can reach it without standing in water. Having the power unexpectedly come back on would be extremely dangerous – water and electricity are a deadly combination. Report any broken lines to the power company.

Gas lines should be turned off at the main valve or meter tank. If you smell gas, leave immediately and call the gas company.

Cleaning Up

There’s no way to sugarcoat the fact that cleanup is long and hard. A broken pipe in an upstairs bathroom can cause a lot of damage, but that’s nothing compared to what a rising river or terrible storm can do.

  • First, get the OK from your insurer to begin the cleanup. Find out what resources are available to help you.
  • Open all windows to air out the building – mold is already growing and you need fresh air.
  • A non-ammonia or pine oil cleaner can be used to help control the growth of mold, followed by a bleach/water disinfectant. FEMA has more information on mold removal.
  • Shovel out contaminated mud and then hose down surfaces.
  • A sump pump and wet vac can help remove water. Water is heavy – a cubic foot weighs ten pounds.
  • Every surface must be cleaned and disinfected. Scrub with a heavy-duty cleaner and then use a solution of 1/4 cup bleach to one gallon of water as a disinfectant.
  • Look for anything that can’t be replaced, such as wedding photos and important documents, and try to dry to avoid further damage. Professional restoration can do a lot, but preserve what you can.
  • Remove wet carpeting, bedding, drapes, and furniture etc. If it’s been wet less than two days, it might be salvageable. Again, take plenty of before and after photos and keep samples of discarded carpet, wallpaper, drapes and other items for the adjuster.
  • Take photos of the water line on wallboard. Poke a hold in the wall at floor level to release any trapped water.

Secure Your Property

Homeowners are responsible for preventing further damage as far as possible, such as boarding up windows or covering a leaking roof with a tarp. Take photos to show what you’ve done to protect your property from further damage.

Neptune Flood offers the flood coverage you need that isn’t covered by your homeowner’s policy. You’ll benefit from: temporary living expenses, replacement costs for your furniture and other lost items, including basement contents, repair, and refill of your pool, detached structures and more. Because of Neptune’s advanced technology and insurance know-how, you’ll save money and receive higher coverage limits.

Contact Neptune Flood today for a quote in three minutes.