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MADISON (WKOW) -- Spring and summer rainfalls can be heavy at times and possibly resulting in flooding conditions. In case it may be river flooding or flash flooding, knowing how to react and what to do can make all the difference. It's important to have a checklist and an emergency plan, so that way you will be weather ready. Assemble an emergency supply kit that includes safety items for a minimum of three days, listen or watch for information pertaining to storm warnings, and also consider installing check valves that can prevent flood waters from backing up into drains of your home.
More deaths occur to flooding than from any other thunderstorm related hazard. Over half of all flood-related drownings takes place when an automobile is driven into flood waters that "don't look that deep". However, it only takes about 12" inches of flowing water to carry away small cars, while 2 feet of flowing water can carry away almost all vehicles. Driving through flood waters should always be prevented, especially if there are barriers that are warning drivers to turn around, because it only takes seconds for things to go wrong.
The next highest percentage of flood deaths is due to walking into or near flood waters. Just under 6" inches of fast streaming flood water is strong enough to knock an adult down. Always remember be prepared to rapidly evacuate or go to high grounds, be extra cautious at night due to poor visibility of climbing waters, and always get out of areas prone to flooding such as low spots. Think twice before driving or walking into a flood.