Safety tips about flooding

The Rice Crisis Management Team is sharing safety tips about the dangers of flooding that were issued by the Regional Joint Information Center, a collaboration of emergency management partner organizations in the Greater Harris County area, and posted at

What is the danger?

Jogging path along Buffalo Bayou is flooded.

Portions of the new jogging path along Buffalo Bayou near Waugh were flooded by the Memorial Day rain.

Driving, walking, swimming or playing in flood waters is extremely dangerous and can lead to serious injury or death. Harris County residents are urged to stay out of flooded areas.

What you need to know:

Generally, floods kill more people in the United States than other types of severe weather.

  • Nearly 50 percent of all flash-flood fatalities nationwide involve vehicles. Saving your life can be as easy as turning your car around when you see water on the road.
  • Flood water can displace animals, insects and reptiles. To protect yourself and your family, be alert and avoid contact.
  • Never attempt to drive through flooded roadways.
  • Even in relatively shallow water, tires can act as flotation devices by lifting up big vehicles and sending them downstream. It takes only 2 feet of water to float a 3,000-pound car.
  • During floods, alligators, snakes, rodents and other wildlife are displaced from their homes and may be present in flood waters. Contact with these creatures can cause serious injury or even death.
  • Be aware that water covering roadways may hide washed-out bridges or gouged-out roadbeds. If you attempt to drive across, you may not be driving on a road.
  • During rainy weather, be alert and stay tuned to local radio or TV.
  • Do not attempt to cross flooded roads or streams on foot. It can take as little as 6 inches of water to knock an adult off his or her feet, and water may be flowing more rapidly than it appears.
  • Never allow children to play near ditches and storm drains.
  • During stormy weather, do not camp or park vehicles along streams or washes.
  • Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to see flood dangers.

Where you can learn more:

Turn around, don’t drown


About Rice News Staff

The Rice News is produced weekly by the Office of Public Affairs at Rice University.