Published On: Thu, Apr 4th, 2013

Flood in Mauritius : What to do during heavy rains, after a flood



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inondation  300x199 Flood in Mauritius : What to do during heavy rains, after a flood

Flood in Port Louis, Mauritius

Mauritius was severely affected by a flash flood on March 30 in which at least 11 persons died. Sudden rains caused flooding in the Mauritian capital. According to local meteorologists, a total of 152 millimeters (6 inches) of rain fell in less than an hour, disrupting traffic and causing chaos in the city with a population of about 140,000. It could have been worst if it was on a weekday with students going home after school. The island main offices are located in Port Louis.

According to the BBC, there will be heavy rainfall again by the end of this week.

Here are some important information you must know concerning heavy rains and flood.

What do I need to know about floods?

Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural hazards. Some floods develop over a period of days, but flash floods can result in raging waters in just a few minutes. Be aware of flood hazards, especially if you live in a low-lying area, near water or downstream from a dam.

What to do during heavy rains?

Be aware of flash floods. If there is any possibility of a flash flood occurring, move immediately to higher ground.
Listen to radio or television stations for local information.
Be aware of streams, drainage channels and areas known to flood suddenly.
Secure your home. If you have time, bring outdoor garden equipment and lawn furniture inside or tie it down. Move essential items to the upper floors of your house.
If instructed, turn off utilities at the main switches or valves.
Fill your car with fuel.
Sterilize the bathtub, then fill the bathtub with water in case water becomes contaminated or services are cut off.
Stay away from flood waters. They could be contaminated.
Do now walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet. If you must walk in a flooded area, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
Do not drive into flooded areas. If flood waters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground, if you can do so safely. You and your vehicle can be quickly swept away as flood waters rise.

What to do after a flood?

Stay away from flood waters. The water may be contaminated by oil, gasoline or raw sewage. The water may also be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
Stay away from moving water. Moving water only six inches deep can sweep you off your feet.
Be aware of areas where flood waters have receded. Roads may have weakened and could collapse under the weight of a car.
Stay away from downed power lines and report them to the power company.
Stay away from disaster areas unless authorities ask for volunteers.
Continue listening to a battery-powered radio for information about where to get assistance for housing, clothing and food.
Consider your family’s health and safety needs. Wash your hands frequently with soap and clean water if you come in contact with flood waters. Throw away food that has come in contact with flood waters. Listen for news reports to learn whether the community’s water supply is safe to drink.
Contact your insurance agent.

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