NWS Observes Flood Safety Week

Flooding is a coast to coast threat to the United States and its territories in all months of the year, but this week--March 17-21--is the time the National Weather Service has set aside as the official Flood Safety Awareness Week. Through daily presentations on its Web site this week (www.weather.gov/floodsafety/), NWS is focusing on different aspects of flooding and related hazards, offering tools, public service announcements, tips, and news.

Today's topic, for example, is a focus on the "Turn Around, Don't Drown"® campaign of the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH), a joint effort of NWS, the Allstate Foundation, Florida Highway Patrol, Texas Parks & Wildlife, and other groups. "Did you know that just six inches of fast-moving flood water can knock you off your feet and two feet of water can sweep an SUV off a road?" a FLASH press release asks. "Each year, more deaths occur due to flooding than from any other thunderstorm-related hazard. Why? The main reason is people underestimate the force and power of water. Many of the deaths occur in automobiles as they are swept downstream. Of these drownings, many are preventable, but too many people continue to drive around the barriers that warn you the road is flooded."

Wednesday's focus will be "Floods, Droughts and other Related Phenomena," providing information on tropical cyclone inland flooding, snowmelt flooding, ice jams, drought, and debris flows, with material provided by the American Red Cross, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Drought Mitigation Center, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and other organizations.

Thursday's focus of the day is on flood insurance, with materials provided by Floodsmart.Gov, an official site of the National Flood Insurance Program, offering information about the types of flood risks your home and property are facing. Friday's focus is on flood safety in general, including links to brochures, videos, magazine articles, and natural hazard statistics including fatalities and injuries.

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