The recent Waldo Canyon Fire has significantly changed the landscape, presenting risk of debris flow and flooding. Hillsides once protected by vegetation have been compromised and precipitation will have unknown effects on the landscape.
The City of Colorado Springs and El Paso County have joined together to provide the public with information about flood preparedness and how to stay safe during a flood event. Both agencies have coordinated the publishing of shared information on their web sites at www.springsgov.com/floodinfo andhttp://shr.elpasoco.com/Waldo+
In particular, citizens are asked to pay attention in particular to the following important information:
Flood Safety – 7 Things to Do or Not Do During a Flood Event
1) Move to higher ground and avoid areas subject to flooding.
2) Do not attempt to walk across flowing streams, drive through flooded roadways or allow children to play in drainage areas (just 6 inches of moving water can knock an adult off their feet).
3) If water rises in your home before you can evacuate, move to the top floor, attic or roof.
4) Stay tuned to local radio or TV on your battery-operated device for important information updates.
5) If you come in contact with floodwaters, wash your hands with soap and disinfected water.
6) If you see clogged inlets or other public drainage infrastructure problems, report it immediately to:
o City Streets Division (719) 385-5934
o El Paso County Public Service Dept. (719) 520-6891
7) Reserve the use of 9-1-1 for life-threatening emergencies. For non-emergent needs requiring public safety response, call 444-7000 within City limits of 390-5555 in El Paso County. For information related questions, call Pikes Peak United Way Information & Referral at (719) 955-0742.
Flood Preparedness – 7 Things to Do Before a Flood
1) Create a plan to move everyone in your family to higher ground during a flood event and make sure each member of your family understands the plan.
2) Have a 72-hour kit ready to go in case you need to evacuate – Remember the 5 P’s in your planning – papers, pills (medicine), phone, pets, purse (money) and photos.
3) Stay aware of local flash flood warnings through local radio, TV and on www.weather.gov/pueblo. Have a battery-operated radio available.
4) Register your phone (landline or cell) for emergency notifications at www.elpasoteller911.org.
5) Purchase flood insurance – most homeowners’ policies do not cover flooding. (www.floodsmart.gov)
6) Take photos of your belongings in case you need to file insurance claims after a flood event.