What to do during a flash flood

CHANGES in the climate are the reasons behind the flash floods that caused mayhem on Johannesburg roads yesterday, killing a reported four people, ” say Water and Climate experts, who have called on SADC to intensify flood and drought monitoring for proper decision making in the resource.

A four year old baby was wrested from its mother and had disappeared while more than a hundred cars were pushed off the N3 highway down an embankment and were submerged.

Media reports say a the storm also caused a section of the roof to collapseat the OR Tambo International, while
Rosebank Killarney Gazette says, a boundary at the Johannesburg Zoo had collapsed.

Today(Thursday) ER 24 says a homeless man was seriously injured after he was swept away by flash floods at the corners of Vlei and Pretoria Road in Kempton Park in Johannesburg.

Professor Justin Shefield from the United Kingdom University of Southampton says weather and climate have become big issues that need real time satellite monitoring as weather is becoming extremely unpredictable, the case of South Africa being a good example. – Patience Rusere
Below are some tips from tips of what to do during a flash flood from ER24:

A flash flood is a rapid flooding of a low-lying area. It may be caused by heavy rain associated with a severe thunderstorm, hurricane or even a tropical storm. Flash floods are distinguished from regular floods by a timescale of less than six hours. You will not always have a warning that these deadly, sudden floods are coming. So, if you live in areas prone to flash floods, plan accordingly in order to protect your family and property. Below is a list of tips.

Your home:

* Keep emergency numbers and important information handy. Also keep emergency supplies such as water, canned food, a can opener, battery-operated radio, flashlight and protective clothing ready.
* Keep a first aid kit.
* Turn off all your household electrical devices.
* Lock all doors and windows.
* Leave the area before it gets too late. Get to higher ground.

Should you be outdoors or in your vehicle, do the following:

* Climb to higher ground and stay there.
* Avoid walking through floodwaters – even 15 centimeters deep can sweep you off your feet.
* If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground.
* Never drive through a flooded road as the road may be washed away.
* If you get swept away in the flood waters, try to grab onto anything you can to pull yourself to safety.
* Getting swept away while inside your vehicle can be extremely dangerous. If you are stuck inside your vehicle, roll down the windows and open the doors to allow water into your vehicle. Doing this will equal the pressure on both sides of the door, allowing you to escape your vehicle.