Understanding a Flood:
Flooding is a coast-to-coast threat to some parts of the United States and its territories nearly every day of the year. This site is designed to teach you how to stay safe in a flood event. If you know what to do before, during, and after a flood you can increase your chances of survival and better protect your property. For instance, it is vital to know what to do if you are driving and hit a flooded road.
Flood Watch vs. Warning:
Flood Watch: Be Prepared!A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for flooding. It does not mean flooding will occur, but it is possible.
Flash Flood Warning: Take Action!A Flash Flood Warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring. If you are in a flood-prone area move immediately to high ground. A flash flood is a sudden violent flood that can take from minutes to hours to develop. It is even possible to experience a flash flood in areas not immediately receiving rain.
Flood Warning: Take Action!A Flood Warning is issued when the hazardous weather event is imminent or already happening. A Flood Warning is issued when flooding is imminent or occurring.
Flood Advisory: Be Aware:A Flood Advisory is issued when a specific weather event that is forecast to occur may become a nuisance. A Flood Advisory is issued when flooding is not expected to be bad enough to issue a warning. However, it may cause significant inconvenience, and if caution is not exercised, it could lead to situations that may threaten life and/or property.
Before a Flood:
Find out what you can do before flooding strikes. Preparation is key to staying safe and minimizing impacts.
- Be Weather-Ready: Check the forecast regularly to see if you're at risk for flooding. Listen to local news or check the Norman National Weather Service webpage to stay informed about flood watches and warnings.
- Sign up for WichitaFalls CodeRED: The number one way to receive an emergency alert from Wichita Falls OEM and NWS is through a CodeRED message. Visit Emergency Alerts for more information on how to sign up and keep your information up to date.
- Know Your Risks: Is your home, business or school in a floodplain? Where is water likely to collect on the roadways you most often travel? What is the fastest way to get to higher ground? Knowing the answers to these questions ahead of time can save your life.
- Build or Re-Stock Your Kit: Have critical items to help you survive before help arrives. During large-scale disasters, help could be delayed.
- Create a Communications Plan: Have a family plan that includes an emergency meeting place and related information.
During a Flood:
During a flood, water levels and the rate the water is flowing can quickly change. Remain aware and monitor local radio and television outlets. Avoid floodwaters at all costs and evacuate immediately when water starts to rise. Don't wait until it's too late!
Turn Around, Don't Drown!
After a Flood:
When floodwaters recede, the damage left behind can be devastating and present many dangers. Images of flood destruction depict destroyed homes and buildings, damaged possessions, and decimated roadways. However, what you can't see can be just as dangerous. Floodwaters often become contaminated with sewage or chemicals. Gas leaks and live power lines can be deadly but are not obvious at first glance.