FloodsAlong with storms, floods are one of the most prevalent natural risks in Belgium. Although people living close to certain watercourses are confronted with this more often, the experience of recent years shows that floods also occur in other places, where the soil and sewage network cannot cope with the abundant rainfall.
- Ask, before building a home, for information on the areas that are prone to flooding.
- Keep your gutters and ditches clean and free.
- Create a plank from water resistant material to place in front of the doors of your home.
- Put waterproof materials in front of the cellar vent, drains ...
- Put material to raise the level of entrances to the living areas on the ground floor and/or basement (e.g. bricks, sandbags, ...).
- Consider buying a water pump (with a drain hose that is long enough) to pump out incoming water.
- You will also need boots, buckets and squeegees.
- Make sure you have batteries and emergency lighting at home.
- Always keep stocks of drinking water in bottles or jerry cans (for drinking, cooking, ...).
- Fix down heating fuel tanks securely and seal the openings.
- Protect your important documents and valuables against the water.
In case of flood warning, find out information, monitor the media and follow recommendations by the authorities.
Is your home safe now? Do not hesitate to offer help to your neighbours.
- Call 112 to report the flood.
- Place a waterproof plank in the door aperture and seal it with silicone.
- Limit journeys and avoid the danger zones.
- Use sandbags to create small dams for basement vents, exterior doors ...
- Take carpets away and move your furniture to a safe height.
- Move valuables and important documents (contracts, invoices ...) to a safe place.
- If necessary, shut off the main valves for gas, electricity and water.
- Park your car in a safe place. Do not leave it in your garage.
- Make sure loose objects in the garden cannot be carried away by the water.
- Consider your pets.
- Photograph the flooded areas.
In case of flood warning, find out information, monitor the media and follow the recommendations by the authorities.
In case of evacuation
- Follow the recommendations of the emergency and relief services.
- Pay special attention to people with disabilities and children.
- Take spare clothes and boots.
- If you are undergoing medical treatment, take the necessary medication with you.
- Turn off gas, electricity and water.
- Make sure all doors and windows are shut.
- If you cannot stay with family or friends, the local authority can provide temporary accommodation. Your local authority will give you the necessary information.
- Once you have evacuated, inform your family and friends about your situation.
- Clean up and disinfect the damaged areas of your home.
- Ventilate the rooms adequately, but also make sure that you heat them adequately to dry off the moisture.
- Do not use tap water which may be unfit for consumption. If necessary, the civil defence will supply drinking water.
- Contact your insurance company as soon as possible. They will answer your questions and help you to start the procedure to settle a claim.
- Take photos of the damaged areas: they can be useful for your claim dossier.
- Find out whether the Disaster Fund can pay compensation.
Find out information from the local authorities: there you will get useful information about the impact of the emergency.