This past Thursday and Friday our West Virginian neighbors down around Greenbrier County, only 150 – 200 miles from us as the crow flies, suffered violent flash flooding that took the lives of 25 people and that number will probably climb this week.
And this flooding actually came much closer to us than you might think. All of that rain fell on the western side of the George Washington National Forest. If it had fallen on the eastern side of the mountain ridge, all of that rain would have poured into the North Fork of the Shenandoah and made its way to Front Royal.
Emergencies can happen at any time. Many of the towns dotting the Shenandoah are within the 100 year and 500 year flood plain. It really is not a question of if, but when. Now is a good time to prepare for a flood, let alone a flash flood.
If you hear about the possibility of a flash flood in your area:
- Get to higher ground immediately. Don’t wait until first responders start alerting people to move.
- Learn how to Turn off utilities
- Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in the water, use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
- Do not drive into flooded areas. Twelve inches of water can begin floating a car. Just turn around and seek higher ground.
- Before an emergency happens, Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
- The emergency kit should contain enough food, water and other supplies to get you through 72 hours. Don’t forget your meds. Don’t forget food for your pets.
- Develop a family communications plan so you will know how to contact one another.More info:
Once-in-a-Thousand-Year Flooding Devastates West Virginia, Killing At Least 23, DemocracyNow.org, June 28, 2016
Information on West Virginia flood recovery efforts:
Find supplies drop-off centers: http://www.statejournal.com/…/list-of-flood-relief-donation…,
Sign-up to volunteer here: http://www.volunteerwv.org/2/index.cfm
Make a donation: www.unitedwayGreenbrier.org/Flood