How to Survive Flash Flooding in Texas

Trapped_woman_on_a_car_roof_during_flash_flooding_in_Toowoomba_2While it is true that Texas is mostly wide open land and desert during the summer and spring the spring the state undergoes heavy rains that can sometimes lead to flooding.

It is true that your mobile home may fair better than most in those conditions safety should still be a prime concern. Below you will find safety tips for surviving heavy rains and floods in the Lone Star State.

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety Nearly 50 percent of all flash flood fatalities nationwide involve vehicles. Saving your life can be as easy as turning your car around when you see water on the road. Never attempt to drive through flooded roadways.
Even in relatively shallow water, tires can act as flotation devices, lifting up big vehicles and sending them downstream. It takes only two feet of water to float a 3,000-lb car. Do not attempt to cross-flooded roads or streams on foot. It can take as little as six inches of water to knock an adult off his or her feet. Furthermore, water may be flowing more rapidly than it appears.

Watch for flooding at bridges and dips in the road. Never drive where water is over bridges or roads. The bridges or the road could suddenly be washed out. If you’re driving at night, be especially careful because visibility is limited. If you should drive into water, don’t try to drive out of it. Get out of the car and safely return to higher ground. Staying on higher ground is key as it will take longer or the water to reach you during the floods.

The Texas Disaster Center explains that if your vehicle becomes surrounded by water or the engine stalls, and if you can safely get out, abandon your vehicle immediately and climb to higher ground. Many deaths have resulted from attempts to move stalled vehicles. When a vehicle stalls in the water, the water’s momentum is transferred to the car. The lateral force of a foot of water moving at 10 miles per hour is about 500 pounds on the average automobile.
The greatest effect is buoyancy – for every foot that water rises up the side of a car, it displaces 1,500 pounds of the car’s weight. So, two feet of water moving at 10 miles per hour will float virtually any car. Many persons have been swept away by flood waters upon leaving their vehicles, which are later found without much damage. Use caution when abandoning your vehicle, and look for an opportunity to move away quickly and safely to higher ground.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s