SPRINGFIELD, IL (KFVS) - Heavy rain producing several rounds of showers and thunderstorms could create flash flooding in low lying areas.
Rain, along with snowmelt could cause rivers and streams to swell.
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker directed the State Emergency Management Operations Center in Springfield to move to a Level 2 to prepare local communities for the potential of flash flooding.
“Residents who live in flood-prone areas of the state are encouraged to take action now to prepare for possible flooding,” said Alicia Tate-Nadeau, Acting Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. “Flooding can cause more damage than any other weather-related event, and statistics dating back to 1995 show flooding has killed more people in Illinois than violent tornadoes.”
Here are things residents can do to prepare for potential flooding:
STAY INFORMED: It's important to stay informed about what is happening with the storm as it approaches and always follow the instructions of local emergency management officials. NOAA Weather Alert Radios provide critical information in a timely manner on storms, hazards and emergencies.
PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY
- Make sure your sump pump is working. Then, install a battery-operated backup in case of power failure.
- Install a water alarm will also let you know if water is accumulating in your basement.
- Clear debris from gutters and downspouts.
- Raise and anchor service equipment and appliances (air conditioning units, water heaters, heat pumps, water meters) onto platforms so they are at least one foot above potential flood waters.
PROTECT VALUABLE DOCUMENTS
- Store copies of irreplaceable documents (such as birth certificates, passports, insurance documents, deeds, etc.) in a safe, dry place. It can also be a good idea to photograph these documents and store the images in a safe place, too.
PREPARE YOUR FAMILY
- Develop a family emergency plan and review it with all family members. Visit Ready.Illinois.gov for step by step instructions on how to prepare for, survive and rebuild after any storm or emergency.
BE READY TO EVACUATE
- Plan and practice a flood evacuation route. Ask someone out of state to be your “family contact” in an emergency, and make sure everyone knows the contact’s address and phone number.
PLAN FOR PETS AND ANIMALS
- Make a pet and animal plan. Many shelters do not allow pets. Make plans now on what to do with your pets if you are required to evacuate your residence.
Visit the Ready Illinois website at www.Ready.Illinois.gov for more information.