Don’t wait before floodwaters reach your home: Prepare now

Aug 2, 2021, 4:40 PM


FILE: A sand bag wall protects property on a Bountiful, Utah street in 1983 amid historic flooding. (Photo: Orland Call, Deseret News Archive)

(Photo: Orland Call, Deseret News Archive)

SALT LAKE CITY — If flooding inundates your neighborhood — like it has for so many Utahns recently — don’t build your wall of sandbags next to your home and don’t wait until the floodwaters start lapping against your house.

Joe Dougherty, director of Public Affairs at Utah Department of Public Safety joined KSL NewsRadio’s Dave & Dujanovic to talk about what to do when flooding happens in your neighborhood.

What to do when floodwaters rise

“We had more than a summer’s worth of rain out of one storm,” said KSL meteorologist Grant Weyman. In fact, Salt Lake City’s Avenues neighborhood received nearly 3 inches from the storm.

Dougherty advised listeners to contact the emergency management office of their city or county and ask about getting sandbags.

“We have a cache of just hundreds of thousands of sandbags at the state level that we can take to different counties if a local county runs out,” he said.

Don’t wait for the flood to prepare

Start building the sandbag wall before the water ever reaches your home. But if water does start to encroach around your property, Dougherty said don’t build your sandbag wall close to your home’s foundation.

“Sandbagging right next to the foundation [or] right next to window well isn’t really that effective,” he said, especially if the ground becomes saturated.

Dave reminded listeners to know where the low lying areas are on your property and start building your sandbag wall in those spots. Also the wall doesn’t have to be a towering fortress.

“You start [by] putting a couple of sandbags . . . dozen sandbags and it doesn’t typically need to four feet high, a foot high or a couple feet usually will do the trick,” Dave said.

Read more about flooding that struck Utah on Sunday:

Photo gallery: Northern Utah hit with flash flooding overnight

At least one person killed in flash flooding in Emery County

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, a.s well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

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Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

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Don’t wait before floodwaters reach your home: Prepare now