A few weeks ago, San Diego got a small taste of the beginning of the El Nino everyone has been talking about for months. For many San Diegans, these recent extremely heavy rains (and a brief tornado warning!) were a wake up call. Most areas of the county had some type of flooding, with the worst amount of flooding hitting San Diego’s beach communities. Some people experience heavy flooding in their homes. Others discover their cars completely under water in flash flood waters they didn’t prepar for.
Whether you were effected by these recent rains or not, many people are beginning to take El Nino more seriously and are preparing for the next round of precipitation. Wondering what you can do when the rains get rough? Keep reading!
Make A Disaster Plan
The best way to ensure you and your family’s safety during a big storm is to have a disaster plan. Even though it sounds a little too serious for something as minor as a rainstorm, you never know what could happen as a result of heavy rainfall in a place like San Diego that does not normally get too much rain. Some people learned this the hard way during our last storm, finding their cars under feet of water or failing to plan how to redirect water or mud that inevitably lead to water damage in their home.
If you do not have the time to sit down with your family and discuss a disaster plan, or are looking for an example to follow, Ready San Diego has great references. They even have a Family Disaster Plan and Personal Survival Guide you can download, fill out, and keep in a safe place in your house.
Have A Clear Understanding of your Insurance Policy
Before you find yourself stuck in a housing emergency, make sure you understand the deductibles and coverage of your home and auto insurance policies. It is important to note that most homeowner’s insurance does not cover any home flooding that has come from outside the home. This means that if your home floods from rainwater in any way, your insurance may not cover it! This can leave you stuck paying thousands of dollars out of pocket without knowing beforehand. If you are in a flood-prone area, it would be wise to consider getting flood insurance if you don’t always have it.
For more information on flood insurance, check out floodsmart.gov
Be “In The Know”
Staying up-to-date with the current weather situation is important during weather like El Nino, which tends to change without much warning. Don’t count on your phone’s default weather app to tell you how much rain to expect. In our experience, they are often pretty far off.
Instead, download the SD Emergency App. If you prefer digital planning for your family, the this app is the way to go. It allows you to import or create your own emergency plan for your family and share it with them. Additionally, the app lets you archive items in your emergency supplies kit, and alerts you when they expire so you know what you need to replace.
If you want to be alerted through your cell phone and email when you’re in danger of being impacted by an emergency of disaster, sign up for AlertSanDiego. The system operates off of the 9-1-1 databases by default, which means that if you don’t have a landline at home or would just prefer to alerts via your cell phone, you need to sign up.
Being prepared for potential disaster does not require that much work. Try and plan a day (or a few hours, if you can’t dedicate a whole day) to disaster planning for your home and car. Doing this could potentially save you thousands of dollars and quite the headache if something were to happen that could’ve been avoided with preparation. If you need some guidance as to how to prepare your home for el nino, read our recent blog post.
Of course, if you still find yourself in a housing emergency due to water damage, flooding, or mold, don’t hesitate to call us. We can also provide you with advice for disaster management planning if you have any questions!