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Bravera Bank

Bravera Bank

Severe Spring Weather and Your Home

Heavy rainfall in spring 2019 caused widespread flooding and millions of dollars in damage. This is exactly what the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) had predicted.

Why did this happen? The flooding was blamed on a number of related factors. Cold weather combined with record winter rainfall allowed the snowpack to increase across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. Storm systems brought warm air and more rainfall causing snowpack to melt rapidly into already swollen rivers. Adding insult to injury, the central states were hit by a bomb cyclone (a rapid fall in pressure creating a hurricane-like storm), with high winds and heavy rains for which few people were prepared.

Yet, despite being described by many as unprecedented, the 2019 floods might not be a freak weather event, but rather a sign of what will continue to come in the future. As more homes are built on flood plains and changes in weather patterns increase the likelihood of frequent severe weather events, it pays to take a little time to ensure you’re prepared for the worst.

Know the risks

You don’t have to live in a flood plain to be at risk for flooding. It’s wise to examine the area around your home and consider any factors that would make flooding more or less likely. For obvious reasons, homes located close to a large body of water (either a large river or the coast) have a higher risk of flooding. If your home is located on higher ground, or there are well-built and maintained flood defenses, this could reduce your risk substantially.

Be ready

If you do live in a flood-prone area, you should have an evacuation plan. Locate your nearest evacuation center and map a route to that location, taking care to avoid roads or areas that could become treacherous in the event of a flood. Make sure your family members know about this plan and agree on a rendezvous point.

Create a checklist of actions and list all important contact numbers. Make sure important documents are in a safe and accessible place. Compile a home inventory and keep a copy either with your insurer or with your documents.

Make up an emergency care kit, including clean water, a water purifier, nonperishable food, basic toiletries, necessary medications, a battery-powered radio, flashlights with spare batteries and mobile phone chargers.

Prepare your defenses

You cannot entirely flood-proof your home, but there are many steps you can take to reduce potential damage to your property. Turn off the gas, electricity and water mains before evacuating your home.

Consider further waterproofing measures and install high shelving for electrical equipment to keep it above the water level. If possible, ensure switches, sockets and circuit breakers are installed above the usual flood level and anchor and elevate generators, air conditioning units and fuel tanks.

Make sure to keep all gutters, drains and downspouts clear of debris as soon as you are warned of a flood. Fit covers to air vents to reduce the flow of water into your home, but don't forget to remove them once the risk of flooding has passed.

Your insurance professional is a valuable resource for flood preparation advice and information about obtaining coverage under the National Flood Insurance Program (administered by FEMA) or through other low-cost policies.  

Questions about insurance? 

Contact one of our insurance advisors by calling 877-483-6811 or by contacting us online. You can also request a quote online. 

Bravera Insurance has locations throughout North Dakota, including Dickinson, Bismarck, Mandan, Devils Lake, Watford City, Carrington, Finley, Cooperstown and Northwood and has recently expanded into Montana with services in Glendive. We are licensed in 38 states with multiple areas of expertise. 

This content is from Applied Systems, Inc. and is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing professional, financial, medical or legal advice. You should contact your licensed professional to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem.
Bravera Insurance is an equal opportunity provider. Products and services offered through Bravera Insurance are: * Not a deposit * Not FDIC insured * Not insured by any federal government agency * Not financial institution guaranteed