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Flood Preparedness

From late December 1996 through January 1997, Plumas County experience major flooding. Many community members were left unprepared for the weeks of rain. Roadways were washed out. No one could get in or out of town to get gas or restock their cupboards. The electricity was also out. I was not prepared.

Today, I have supplies ready in case of another Flood. Here's a checklist of what you need to do to prepare you and your family:  Flood Safety Checklist

Use sandbags to fill in low-lying areas around your property and to redirect water away from your home. Here's how to 
make sandbags and use them to protect your land.

  1. Gather the following supplies from a hardware or home improvement store: cloth or plastic sandbags, polyethylene sheeting, sand, a shovel and a wheelbarrow.
  2. Plan to work with another person. One person should hold the bag while the other one fills it.
  3. Fill the sandbag one-quarter to one-half full with sand. It should weigh about 40 lbs.
  4. Fold the empty part of the bag over.
  5. Be sure that when you place the bag, the folded-over side is facing down, so that no water will seep in. If one bag leaks, the whole pile will be ruined. 
  6. Dig a trench around the area you want to protect. (The standard trench is usually 4 to 6 inches deep and 18 to 24 inches wide.) 
  7. Lay the polyethylene sheeting in the trench and secure it with several sandbags.
  8. The sandbags should be placed in the direction of the water flow, and there should be no space in between bags.
  9. Complete one row before you begin the next.
  10. Stagger the second row on top of the first (similar to the way that bricks are staggered in a wall). This system provides added protection.
  11. Limit your stack to three layers of sandbags, since any more may not be sturdy.
  12. Following the rainy season, empty the sand into your garden and save the bags for next year.

Listen to your local radio station~
KQNY 91.9
KJDX 93.3
KTOR 99.7
KKOH 790
KNLF 95.9
KBNF 98.9

Check the local newspaper often~
Feather River Bulletin

Online Resources:
Be Ready Campaign:
Federal Emergency Management Agency:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration:
American Red Cross:


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