How to Prevent Flood Damage

Topics: Loss Control

Summary: When a hurricane or storm is approaching, certain steps should be taken to reduce flood damage. In this article, we’ll discuss flood damage prevention tips and what to do after a flood to ensure companies can get back to business as soon as possible.

How to Prevent Flood Damage from Hurricanes and Storms

Each year flooding causes severe damage to many homes and businesses across the U.S. Since 1980, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) reports that the United States has seen 310 weather or climate disasters exceeding over $2.15 trillion in damages and costs, including flooding. There were two major flooding events in California and Louisiana in 2021 that contributed to the $145 billion in damages from all weather and climate disasters in the country last year. Worldwide, floods cause more than $40 billion in damages annually.

Severe storms such as hurricanes also often lead to flooding. Even if you aren’t in the direct path of a hurricane, the heavy rain can spread across a big part of the country, increasing the risk of flooding. And with storm season ranging from spring through fall, floods can occur throughout the year even when hurricanes aren’t hitting the coast.

Since floods can occur anywhere, preventative steps can help protect your business, so it can remain open during extreme weather or can re-open quickly after a flood disaster. Flooding can happen with little to no warning, and taking steps that are designed to prevent or reduce flood damage will help your business minimize damages should your business be in the path of rising water.

How Can Flood Damage Be Reduced?

Our video below shares flood damage prevention tips to help businesses understand how to reduce costly damage.

Flood Damage Prevention: What to Do Before a Flood

If you know your area is at risk of flooding due to an upcoming storm or hurricane, you can do a few things to help prepare and prevent damage to your building, its contents, and your property, both inside and out.
  • Elevate & protect low-level/outdoor machinery
  • Move outdoor furniture, signs and other objects inside; anchor heavier objects
  • Install dry flood protection materials (floodgates, sandbags, tarps, etc.)
  • Shut off electrical service if system and outlets could possibly be under water
  • Elevate and protect low-placed equipment by placing it on masonary blocks or concrete
  • Roll up area rugs & get them off the floor to reduce mold and mildew
  • Elevate all office electronics such as computers and printers

Flood Damage Prevention: What to Do After a Flood

After a flood occurs, make sure to follow these recommendations:
  • Take pictures of damage and contact your insurance agent
  • When safe to do so, disconnect all affected electronics and electrical equipment and move it to a dry location
  • Ventilate with fans or use dehumidifiers to dry out interior spaces
  • Quickly remove standing water and water damaged materials
  • Protect your property from further damage by boarding up windows and salvaging undamaged items

Loss Control Services from AmTrust Financial

AmTrust’s Loss Control Department understands that knowing the specific risks your organization faces is key to reducing damage following a climate disaster and enhancing employee safety. We offer a library of commercial property protection resources, including information on flood damage prevention and our Flood Preparedness Checklist. For more information about our loss control services, please contact us today.

This material is for informational purposes only and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors.

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