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Flash flood facts, safety tips + resources


Rain | Image via Pexels

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I’m sure everyone in Charleston can agree: we signed up to live near the ocean, not in it.

Especially amid hurricane season (June 1-Nov. 30), flash floods plague the Lowcountry as both a nuisance + safety threat. During rain showers – and even more so during high tide streets, parking lots + buildings often suffer major flooding.

Check out these flood facts + safety tips from Charleston County and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to stay in the know when flash floods occur.

Fast facts

Aside from fire, floods are the most common natural disaster in the U.S.
Floods are often deeper than you realize.
Floodwater can carry harmful debris that you may or may not see.
Floodwater can carry harmful bacteria.
○ Cars can be swept away in just two feet of water.
○ People can be knocked over by just six inches of floodwater.

Safety tips

○ Never walk in floodwater.
○ Avoid driving through floods. If your car stalls in a flood, abandon the vehicle immediately.
Move to higher ground if/when possible.
Have an evacuation plan + emergency supplies in place.
Check with the Charleston County Emergency Management Division (EMD) to see if you live in a flood-prone area.
Check out FEMA’s flood insurance rate map + look into getting flood insurance.
View a list of Charleston County flood zones + a breakdown of what each zone means.
If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.

Additional resources

Charleston County Emergency Management Division (EMD)
National Safety Council
American Red Cross
National Weather Service
National Flood Insurance Program

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