Have you considered how you will pay for home repairs or replace your belongings following a flood? Many people don't realize that standard homeowner's insurance policies don't cover flood damage. Check your homeowner's insurance policy to make sure you know what is and is not covered. Then talk to your insurance agent about a flood insurance policy. Flood insurance can protect you and your family from ten of thousands of dollars worth of damage that can result from just a few inches of water in your home.
Flooding and Electrical Hazards
Do you know what types of electrical hazards exist when your basement floods? The Village reminds residents that they need to be aware of the possibility of electrical equipment becoming energized when it comes into contact with water. Basement flooding has the potential to create a serious electrocution hazard for you and your family so here are some important safety measures to keep in mind:
- Call 9-1-1 if your basement has flooded and you see or smell smoke.
- Do not step into a flooded basement, or other are of your home, if water is or might be in contact with electrical outlets, appliances, or cords.
- Do not attempt to turn off power at the breaker box if you have to stand in water to do so. If you cannot safety reach your breaker box, call ComEd to shut off power at the meter.
- Do not use electrical appliances or touch wires, switches, or fuses, if you are wet or standing in water.
- If an electrical appliance has been in contact with water, have a professional check it out before you use it as it may need to be repaired or replaced.
- Have ground fault interrupters (GFCIs) professionally installed on outlets in your basement, as well as in rooms where water is used such as your kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room.
My basement has flooded! How should I pump it out?
Residents with water in their basement need to be extremely careful when pumping them out. Pumping the water out too quickly could cause structural damage and cause basement walls to collapse. Water must be drained slowly to equalize the pressure in your basement.
FEMA recommends that residents use the following procedures when pumping out their basement:
- Start pumping when water is no longer covering the ground outside your house.
- Pump out only one foot of water to start. Mark the water level and then wait overnight.
- Check the water level the next day. If the water level went back up (covered your mark) it is still too early to drain your basement. Wait another 24 hours, then pump out one foot of water again and check the level the next day.
- Once the water level in your basement stops covering you mark, pump out between two (2) and three (3) feet and wait overnight again.
- Repeat step 4 daily until all of the water is out of your basement.
Please note that the Village does not have pumps or extra resources to assist residents whose basements have flooded.
For more information about basement flooding, go to http://www.ready.gov/floods.
Caution: Driving through Standing Water
When street flooding occurs even a few inches of standing water can be potentially dangerous for drivers. Residents needs to be cautious when driving following severe storms, keeping an eye out for street flooding. Residents should avoid, whenever possible, driving through standing water of any depth.