What to do if your home is flooded

Follow these tips when returning home from a flood.


Water levels in the American River have risen more than four feet since the start of the year according to the USGS.

Photo by SACtoday Staff

As wet weather and high winds continue to grip the Sacramento region, so do concerns of flooding. If your home has been affected, Sac County has created a guide of what you need to know when returning home after a flood.

The county’s tips include:

  • Use extreme caution when entering buildings. Flood waters can be contaminated with sewage, as well as damaging to the structural integrity of homes. They may also bring in animals such as snakes.
  • Check for gas leaks or damage to electrical systems. Fire is the most frequent post-flooding hazard due to issues like flooded electrical circuits and broken gas lines. If you see sparks or frayed wires, or smell burning insulation, turn off the main fuse box or circuit breaker. Call an electrician if these are not accessible without getting wet.
  • Discard any food damaged by flood waters. Foods not kept in waterproof containers, plastic utensils, wooden cutting boards, and any food inside refrigerators or freezers that were at least partially submerged are no longer safe to use. Do not eat refrigerated foods that have spent more than four hours at temperatures over 41°.
  • Clean and dry the building within 48 hours to help prevent mold. Remove all items that have been wet for more than two days and have your heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system inspected by a professional who specializes in mold clean up.

Be sure to check out the complete list of tips and view our storm prep tips as well.