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There are several things you can do to keep your family safe and help minimize flood damage. Even if you don't live in a floodplain, knowing what to do (and not to do) in a flood can be life-saving.

Develop an emergency plan

Be prepared in advance with an evacuation plan, emergency kit, and detailed checklist because warning of an impending flood may provide little time to prepare.

Safeguard your possessions

Create a personal flood file containing information about all your possessions and keep it in a secure place, such as a safe deposit box or waterproof container.

Prepare your house

Shut off gas and electricity and move valuable belongings upstairs. Store important documents and other irreplaceable items where they are unlikely to be damaged.

Get flood warnings

The Linn-Benton ALERT Emergency Notification System is a service by which residents and businesses can register to be notified by telephone, text, and/or email regarding emergencies or critical protective actions. Register online at: cityofalbany.net/lbalert.

In the event of a flood, regular programming on radio and television will be interrupted to describe the nature of the flooding, the locations likely to be affected, and what protective action to take. Emergency services personnel will also conduct door-to-door notification when flooding is imminent. You should heed these warnings and take appropriate action to safeguard your life and property.

Avoid flood waters

It is NEVER safe to swim or walk through flood waters. Moving water can move a car – imagine what it can do to you.

Turn around, don’t drown

It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away a small car. This video illustrates the dangers of driving through flood waters. http://www.nws.noaa.gov/os/water/tadd/ More than half of the deaths from flooding each year occur in vehicles.

Stay away from power lines and electrical wires

Electrical current can travel through water. Report downed power lines to your electric utility (Pacific Power or Consumers Power) or the county Emergency Management Office.