There’s not much anyone can do to stop a river and its tributaries from flooding. Once it’s started, it has a mind of its own and no one can predict where it’s going or when.
Snow melting quicker than anticipated or heavy rains cause most flooding, although dams or levees have broken before and created damage beyond belief in some places.
If there is sufficient warning of flooding, evacuations are a best bet. Shelters are provided where you will find food and warmth until it is safe to return to your home. Neighbors in and out of town come together when a natural disaster is in the making. Homes are open to victims of flooding where they will be safe.
Flash floods, on the other hand, cannot be avoided. If you are caught up in one of these, there is not much you can do to survive unless you have previous warning. A lady who lived by a small creek, driving home from work one day, was washed out of her car and down the street. Luckily, she survived but, her car was demolished.
If you live near water, it is best to keep gasoline in your vehicle or boat so that you may pack up some essentials and not be around when the water is rising, bringing with it the animals that live in and around it. Some of these animals, such as snakes and alligators, are very dangerous. Even after the water has receded, they may be found in the rooms of your house. Upon returning to your home, it is best to check carefully that a dangerous snake hasn’t taken up residence in one of your kitchen cabinets or the like.
Sandbagging helps to hold a lot of the rising water back but, if you are a farmer, there is nothing you can do if the water chooses to flood your farmland and ruin your crops, causing severe losses. This is something you just have to let go and try again the next year if you choose to stay in the area.
FEMA (Federal Emergency) was created for the very purpose of assisting victims of natural disasters. They can be contacted and will help with housing and your other needs if your home has been flooded.
The Southeastern United States seems to be the worst for flooding, mainly because most of it is swampland, some of which has been built up and office buildings and apartments built on it. However, other parts of the United States have been known for flooding so none of us are exempt.
It is hard to prepare for any type of disaster, so the best thing for you is to evacuate when you are told to.