Flood Safety Information

Ultimate Flood Safety Guide

Welcome to our Ultimate Canadian Flood Safety Guide!

Here, we'll be covering important safety information and best practices for remaining safe in an emergency flooding situation!

Feel free to dig in & jump to whatever topic interests you:


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What Should You Do In a Flood Situation?

What to do if you have a flood infographic

Follow These Important Steps to Ensure the Safety of You and Your Family.

August 12, 2020 

When a flood happens, there are important steps to take to ensure the safety of you and your family.

Before the Flood

  • Make an evacuation plan with your family

  • Listen to the news for local flood warnings and updates

  • Move valuable items and documents to the highest level of property to keep them safe and dry

During the Flood

  • Head to your nearest emergency center and register you and your family and also get more information on next steps

  • If roads are closed, find alternative routes- driving through flood water is dangerous

  • Avoid food or water that has come in contact with flood water

  • Report downed trees and damaged utility lines

  • Contact your insurance company and a reputable flood restoration company as soon as possible

After the Flood

  • Follow local news and return home only after it is safe to do so
  • If you cannot return to your home for safety reasons, you need to find temporary housing for your family and pets. contact your local community government for assistance with disaster relief
  • Be safe when re-entering your home- do not turn the power or gas on or use flooded appliances until checked by an approved contractor
  • Start cleanup

Follow these steps, and you can minimize the impact and maximize your family's safety during a flood situation!


Understanding flood risk and vulnerability infogrpahic


 July 15, 2020

Flood risk comes from a community-specific combination of HAZARD (rainfall, storm surge), EXPOSURE (people and structures in the hazard area), and VULNERABILITY (characteristics of the community that increase sensitivity to damage). 

To understand flood risk, a community must look at:

  • How often floods have occurred in the past and how often they may occur in the future

  • How bad a flood could be- where will water go in the community, and how deep could it get

  • When floods typically occur, and how long they can last for

  • What is in the path of the projected floodwater

What information and data will a community need?

  • Understanding HAZARD

  • Floodplain mapping, including topography, precipitation and stream flow data

  • Climate change information- how will our current flood risk change in the next 20, 50 or 100 years?

Understanding exposure & vulnerability

  • Locations and details of community infrastructure: roads, bridges, culverts, housing , community buildings, water resources, landfills, water and sewer treatment facilities, etc. 

  • Locations and details of culturally important areas: Burial areas, harvesting areas, hunting grounds, trap lines, firewood sources, community gathering places, etc.

  • Characteristics of community members: Population, age, housing arrangements, etc. 

  • Land use: Residential, agricultural, commercial, government, etc.

  • Geography: Locations of lakes and rivers, higher areas, wetlands, etc.

  • Vegetation and Wildlife

  • Community Services: Businesses, governments emergency management departments, education, health, etc. 

We can't reduce flood hazard, but we can reduce exposure and vulnerability through adaptation planning.

More tools & resources to help your community understand flood hazards and prepare for flooding can be found at Quik-Response.


Vasalta Floods: How to Prepare

Floods: How To Prepare


Floods happen. It's up to you to protect your home and your family.

Protect Your Home

  • Talk to your local government, insurer, and neighbors about your risks

  • Install window wells or caulk windows to keep your basement dry

  • Clear storm grates on your street

  • Direct water from downspouts away from your home

  • Talk to your municipality about disconnecting downspouts from the municipal water system

  • Clean your gutters/eaves troughs

  • Install a sump pump or backwater valve to keep your basement dry

  • Move valuable items, important documents, and hazardous materials to keep them dry

  • Grade your property so water drains away from your home

Protect Your Family

  • Make a plan to evacuate and connect with your family at a safe place

  • Talk to your neighbors and help each other out before, during and after a flood

  • Know the emergency plans for your community, school, and work

  • Stay away from flooded streams and rivers

  • Don't drive in flood waters

  • Be aware of emergency services in your community

While flooding may seem inevitable in some areas, the damages caused by them are not. 

When preparing for a flood, consider using flood mitigation tactics to protect your home and personal property. 

These can include turning off basement furnaces and outside gas valves, protecting electrical, natural gas or propane heating equipment and removing toxic substances from the flood area. 

Get Prepared highlights more strategies to reduce flood damages such as the following:

  • Install drainage for downspouts  
  • Keep important documents at high levels of ground
  • Consider animal/pet evacuation routes
  • Move furniture and electrical appliances to above ground floors

Emergency kits are a great investment to help you prepare for any type of flood outcome. 

Flood emergency kits typically contain: batteries, a flashlight, first-aid kit, battery-operated radio, food and water. 

The water supply should contain about one gallon per person. The food supply should be non-perishable and last for a minimum of three days. 

Other flood emergency kits may include additional items such as blankets and hygiene products. 

Another way to successfully prepare for flood season is to purchase flood insurance for your home, business building or rented complex:

  • When buying flood insurance, look at coverage not just for your property, but also your electrical, plumbing, finishings, appliances, electronics and any personal belongings you think might be at risk. 

  • Coverage can range in price depending on the type of building that you are getting the flood insurance for. After evaluating the proximity of your location from the nearest flood hazard, consult your insurance agent about discounted rates on insurance. 

  • Areas that are perceived as lower-risk are outside flood zones and make you qualified for a reduced cost to your insurance. These policies range depending on what type of insurance provider you go through.. The National Flood Insurance Program (FEMA) offers more insights about types of flood insurance options that are available to you. 

These preventive measures, individually and collectively, can be beneficial towards minimizing the impact that flood season can have on you and your family. 

By anticipating the outcomes this season can bring, you can be better equipped with the tools to overcome all the challenges that come with floods

Home Flood Water Damage


April 10, 2020

Household water damage – whether caused by flooding, an overflowing bathtub, or a leaky roof, is a headache for homeowners. 

Aside from damages to the home itself, water destroys expensive electronics & appliances, your favorite clothing, and pretty much anything else of value inside a home.

Every Canadian homeowner needs to understand the importance of flood preparation and understand the consequences for not doing so. 

Check out this infographic showing just how much damage a single inch of floodwater can cause to a normal-sized home.

Crazy, right?    

Most people educate themselves about flooding AFTER experiencing water damages to their home.

But it doesn't have to be that way.    

In fact, if you're reading this article, you're already well on the way to understanding the implications of household water damage and the importance of preventing it.    

Let's get into it. 

Here are 6 things that every Canadian property owner NEEDS to know about household water damage:  

1. Floods are the leading cause of Canadian property damage  

This comes as no surprise. Flooding is the most costly natural disaster in Canada in terms of property damage and can occur in any region, any city, and at virtually any time of the year.    

2. You have a much greater chance of losing your home to a flood than to a fire 

Most people are fearful of losing their home to a fire.

Did i leave the oven on? 

Did I forget to put out that candle? 

We've all been there. 

However, you actually have a much better chance of flooding your house than burning it down. 

Your home has a 26% chance of being damaged by flooding during the course of 30 years, compared to a 10% chance of being damaged by house fire.  

3. If left untreated, it takes mold 24-48 hours to germinate and grow 

On top of the water damage, mold can quickly grow inside a home. This is not only a health hazard, but also makes the restoration process slower, harder, and costlier.  

4. There's very little overland flood insurance available in Canada

Other than a few private insurers in Alberta, overland flooding is not insured in Canada

This is pretty unbelievable considering floods are by far the most expensive natural disaster for both homeowners and the government.

Worth noting, over 70 per cent of Canadians believe they have overland flood insurance coverage, though in actuality they do not. 

As such, if you're a Canadian homeowner, you need to learn how to protect your home from flooding.

5. Water damages caused by flooding are on the rise in Canada

A United Nations report from September 2019 claims that by year 2060, the “once per century” coastal floods in BC and The Maritimes will become annual events.  

6. Don't depend solely on flood maps to gauge your property's risk. Your home is always at risk for water damage

Inaccurate flood map info is a big problem for the insurance industry. 

Currently, flood mapping exists along 28,000 kilometres of rivers and streams in Canada- a very impressive number. 

However, about 50% of the mapping prepared before 1996, under the then auspices of the now-defunct Flood Damage Reduction Program.  

There you have it, 6 things every Canadian homeowner needs to know about water damages. 

Avoid becoming a statistic and equip your home with an effective means of flood prevention 

Flood Protection Tools:

Flood Barriers

QUIK-RESPONSE ™ Self-Expanding Sandbags

Sandbag Calculator

How many sandbags do I need to build a flood barrier?

Flood Damage Cost Calculator

How much money will flood damages cost me?  


5 Safety Tips for Flash flooding infographic Vasalta


April 25, 2020 

According to Public Safety Canada, floods rack up the highest cost in damage and are the most common natural disaster in the country. 

Heavy rain or rapid melting of ice over a dry floodplain are just a couple of ways a flash flood can occur

In Canada, floods are very common and are practically bound to happen. Safety is the utmost importance in these situations. 

Follow these 5 practical tips to stay safe:

1. Be Informed

In order to stay safe,   when there is inclement weather.   

During a flash flood warning, authorities will advise the public to stay put, move to a higher ground or even evacuate. 

There are also a number of great online resources at your disposal to stay up-to-date with flood-related news:

  • Flood List.com - This is a great site for flood-related news, history and warnings.  

2. Find Shelter

When under a flood warning, you never want to go towards a floodplain. Many people think it’s safe to drive through floodwater, when in fact it only takes one tenth of an inch of water for a car to hydroplane. 

Walking or swimming into a flood is even worse. 

We’ve all seen the news stories with people swimming and tubing in floodwater. Tons of debris, toxic waste and sewage is swept up in floodwater, and exposure to this can be very hazardous. 

Instead of going towards the flooded area, turn around and seek higher ground.

3. Be Prepared

Because floods are the most common natural disaster in Canada, it is important to have a plan should a flash flood occur:

The first step is to know if your area is prone to flash floods.


Check out this online database of Canada’s flood maps.

Be sure to pay attention to heavy rain or any other factors that could cause flooding. 

Study evacuation routes or shelter nearby your area.

A flood emergency kit is also a good idea to always have on hand. If you do need to evacuate quickly, having a bag with some necessities is always a smart idea. Items like extra battery charges for phones, prescribed medication and other critical equipment are great to stock up the bag with.

4. Be Cautious After the Flood

After the flood is over, only return home when authorities say it's okay and still be attentive to news updates. 

When cleaning up your home or entering the flood zone, make sure to wear gloves and boots so you won't be cut on any debris. 

Also, you must watch out for wet electrical equipment. Electrocution is a huge risk after a flood and touching an electrical wire still active could be fatal.

5. Utilize Flood Barriers to Protect Your Property

Floodwater damages are extremely costly. 

Check out this infographic showing just how costly a single inch of floodwater is to a normal sized home. 

Planning ahead and purchasing a flood barrier to protect your home is a great way to safeguard your property & personal safety. 

Unsure of what flood barrier to use?

We recommend self-expanding sandbags, or any of the barriers on this list: The Best flood Barriers of 2020.

Looking for more ways to protect your property from flooding? Here are 35 ways to protect your home from flooding 


How to prepare an emergency flood kit infographic


May 7, 2020

Author: Thita Sripraiwalsupakit

As a homeowner, it is normal for you to be protective of your beloved property. Floods are one of the most common natural disasters in Canada and can be very costly for any Canadian that is not properly prepared. 

A Flood Emergency Kit is one of the best ways to prepare for Canada’s multiple flood seasons. Flood kits can vary among families and should reflect your family’s lifestyle and needs. 

In this article, we’ll show you how to assemble an emergency flood kit that includes all the essential items to keep you and your family safe.

Emergency Supply Checklist:

Basic Supplies

It is important to remember that an emergency kit prepares your family for 2 situations: Staying in your place after a flood or evacuating to a more protected location.

  • Cash, credit cards, and ID cards’ photocopies - Be prepared if banks and ATMs are not accessible for a long period.
  • Water - A person needs at least one gallon per day. At least 3 days of water should be prepared.
  • Food - Non-perishable food should be prepared for at least 3 days. Be sure to prepare a manual can opener and recheck the expiration date every 6 months.
  • Disposable utensils - Plates, silverware, and napkins should be prepared.
  • Radio - Make sure it is a battery powered model and prepare extra batteries.
  • Clothing and blankets - This might depend on seasonal needs but should include shoes and rain coats.
  • First-aid kit - It is essential to prepare your family prescription drugs and medicine. More detailed lists can be found on the Red Cross Website. (link to Red cross)
  • Toiletries - Be sure to prepare hygiene items such as toilet paper, sanitizer, wet wipes, toothbrushes, and toothpastes.
  • Flashlight, batteries, matches - The essential items to prepare for a night time.
  • Keys - This should include a copy of your car and house keys.

If there are infants in your family, be sure to prepare baby essentials such as baby food and diapers. The same case applies to families with pets: pets food and water should be prepared. Avoid assembling any glass bottle supplies in your kit to prevent any injuries.

Important Documents

To prepare for flooding, these documents that should be stored in a waterproof container:

  • Financial documents - Insurance papers, bank account information, investment or mortgages information, or any documents that cannot be accessed electronically. 
  • Medical records - This is important if some family members are sick and need to be hospitalized at the hospital with no previous medical history.

Home Protection

Other than assembling basic supplies, most people forget that their homes need to be protected from floods as well. 

One of the most simple, yet effective ways to prevent flood water damage is to use sandbags since they act as a great barrier for your home, diverting water around rather than going through a building. 

While sandbags can be difficult to keep on-hand at your property, self-expanding sandbags are a cost effective & easy to use tool that can be easily stored onsite to protect your home from intrusive flood water.

Store Your Emergency Kit

Your emergency kit can be stored in a backpack, a duffle bag, or even a clean unused trash bag. 

Make sure to place them in the most accessible and visible place in your home that you can grab it easily if floods occur. 

It is ideal to store food and water in a dry and cool place where sunlight cannot reach. 

It would be best if you can check your emergency kit every 6 months to make sure all the items are still in a good condition and not expiring.

The needs of every family are different, and your flood kit should reflect that. 

Follow our simple guide to ensure that your family is prepared to deal with emergency flood situations. 

For more information on protecting your home from flooding, recommended flood barriers, and information about overland flood insurance, visit our flood blog!

Additional Flood-Related Guides

Complete Canadian Flood Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Canadian Flood Insurance Guide

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers