Flood zones remain across south Louisiana, tips to stay safe
LOUISIANA — American Red Cross volunteers, equipment and supplies are continuing to move into communities that were affected by Hurricane Isaac, even as rain and rising waterways are causing flooding in new areas.
The Red Cross reminds people to put safety first, and offers these tips:
- Listen to area radio and television stations for possible flood warnings and reports of flooding in progress or other critical information from the National Weather Service.
- Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.
- Stay away from floodwaters. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.
- If you come upon a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
- Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about running water or contaminated water.
- Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood danger.
For those in need of shelter, call 211 or use the Red Cross Hurricane App for the nearest location.
In those areas where floodwaters are receding, residents should follow instructions from officials on when it is safe to return home.
- Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damage.
- Parts of your home may be collapsed or damaged. Approach entrances carefully.
- If you smell natural or propane gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and call the fire department.
- If power lines are down outside your home, do not step in puddles or standing water.
- During cleanup, wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots.
- Make sure your food and water are safe. Discard items that have come in contact with floodwater, including canned goods, water bottles, plastic utensils and baby bottle nipples. When in doubt, throw it out!
More than 4,200 people stayed in 60 Red Cross or community shelters last night in six Gulf Coast states. Of those, three-quarters were in Louisiana. More than 3,000 trained Red Cross disaster workers from across the United States have deployed to the Gulf region to help.
You can help people affected by disasters like Hurricane Isaac as well as countless crisis at home and around the world, by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. To donate, people can visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.