September 1, 2021 3:04 PM
“The Heart of Northern New Mexico…Where Cultures Unite”
New Mexicans are advised to monitor weather conditions with the help of the NWS at weather.gov and road conditions by dialing the New Mexico Road Advisory Hotline at 5-1-1 or by visiting nmroads.com. DHSEM also advises New Mexicans to consider the following safety measures:
Before a flood:
• Make a plan for your household, including your pets, so that you and your family know what to do, where to go, and what you will need to protect yourselves from flooding. Learn and practice evacuation routes, shelter plans, and flash flood response.
• Gather supplies, including three gallons of water, a first aid kit, a stock of food that requires no cooking or refrigeration, a battery-operated radio, flashlights, extra batteries, necessary medications, and a back-up power source.
• Purchase or renew flood insurance. Homeowner’s insurance typically does not cover flooding. Information on flood insurance through The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is available at floodsmart.gov. While there is usually a 30-day waiting period for an NFIP insurance policy to go into effect, this wait may be waived in the event of flooding after a wildfire.
During a flood:
• Evacuate immediately, if told to evacuate. Never drive around barricades. Local responders use them to safely direct traffic out of flooded areas.
• Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Fast-moving water can wash bridges away without warning.
• Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown!
After a flood:
• Avoid driving except in emergencies.
• Wear heavy work gloves, protective clothing, and boots during clean up, and use appropriate face coverings or masks if cleaning mold or other debris.
• Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. Turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock if it is safe to do so.
• Avoid wading in floodwater, which can be contaminated and contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
Residents can also contact local emergency managers for help obtaining sandbags – a simple but effective tool for diverting flood waters around buildings. In recent months, DHSEM has delivered more than 400,000 sandbags across the state. Detailed instructions from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for filling and placing sandbags are available here.
Lastly, residents who have been affected by severe flooding can contact the American Red Cross of New Mexico for emergency support and recovery planning at 1-800-842-7349.