Health Tip: Recovering After a Flood

Promptly remove health hazards

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(HealthDay News) -- Returning home after a flood can be very unpleasant, but there are things you can do to help protect your health and safety.

The American Red Cross offers these post-flood guidelines:

  • Don't go home until the building has officially been declared safe.
  • Carefully inspect the outside of your home before entering, looking for downed power lines, foundation cracks and problems with gas lines.
  • Make sure the roof and overhangs are fully supported before you enter.
  • Steer clear of standing water if you see downed power lines. Move away and call the fire department immediately if you smell propane or natural gas, or hear a hissing sound.
  • Watch for wild animals, especially snakes in the water, and keep children away from water and other dangerous areas.
  • Use caution around hazardous materials such as batteries, fuel, paint and cleaning products. Protect yourself with rubber boots, gloves and protective clothing.
  • Throw away any food or utensils that have come in contact with flood water.

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