Prepare now for spring flood season

Published 11:46 am Tuesday, April 11, 2023

It’s that time of year when increased rain chances also means increased flood risk. Mississippians should consider flood insurance now, before they need it, according to Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney.

“At last check, there were about 57,000 National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policies in force in Mississippi,” said Chaney. “Most Mississippians with NFIP coverage pay about $784 each year.”

Over one million properties in the state are not covered by any type of flood insurance. It typically takes 30 days for a flood policy to go into effect and homeowner’s policies do not cover flooding.

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Tips to prepare for flooding now:

  • Sign up for your community warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
  • Learn and practice evacuation routes and shelter plans.
  • Gather supplies you might need if you have to leave home quickly. Keep in mind, you may need medication, pet food and crates, and extra batteries and chargers for mobile phones.
  • Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Make digital copies of those documents to upload and protect them with a password.

After a flood

  • Listen to authorities for information and return home only when authorities say it’s safe.
  • Avoid driving, except in emergencies.
  • Snakes and other animals may have come into your home or business during the flood.
  • Wear gloves and boots during cleanup.
  • Don’t touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you’re in standing water. If it’s safe, turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock.
  • Avoid wading in floodwater as it could be contaminated.
  • Only use a generator outdoors and away from windows.
  • File a flood insurance claim as soon as possible.
  • Call 1‐800‐621‐3362 for further assistance or Register for FEMA Flood Disaster Assistance.