Submerged vehicles, flooded basements, power outages, and the loss of hot water are just a few of the effects of the massive storms that took place this past weekend in Wayne County. Many Detroiters are still reeling as their cars remain submerged and they deal with property damage water has caused in their own homes. For some of us, this added anxiety can feel overwhelming on top of all that the COVID-19 pandemic and last year has thrown at us.
We can say with vigor, from last years’ experiences, that hindsight is 2020. Thus, for those of us looking for aid in our damage, or for those looking to know what to do in future flooding events, here is a curated list of some do’s and don’ts to keep yourself, family, and friends safe.
KNOW WHO TO CALL
MI 211 is a fantastic resource for Michiganders to call for answers and help with emergencies. Individuals can dial 2.1.1, call 844-875-9211, text their zip code to 898211, or even live chat with someone online.
Detroiters are encouraged to report any emergency water or sewer issues, including sewage backups, street flooding, and gushing water by calling (313) 267-7401or through the app “Improve Detroit”.
If anyone is in need of medical help, call 9.1.1 immediately.
ENGAGE WITH YOUR NEIGHBORS
Detroit has made extreme efforts over past years to define certain neighborhoods and integrate a sense of community within them. A great way to make sure your neighbors are safe in states of emergency, and to be in contact with other individuals in your neighborhood, is to download the Nextdoor app. Of course, if tech is not quite your style, knocking on your neighbors’ doors is a classic and well-liked technique.
When we have a community around us, it is helpful not only during the day-to-day to check up on each other, but is also an excellent way to have contacts for dependable and nearby individuals when natural disasters come our way.
CHECK YOUR SUMP PUMP
This tip is mostly only applicable during floods—either on a large scale or small—but it is an important one. Checking your sump pump isn’t an extreme-sports level task, yet many of us put it off assuming all will be well. The ProClean Blog offers a great walk-through about how to check it to ensure that any water in your basement or home can be extracted out in a safe manner.
CALL THE CITY IF YOU HAVE DAMAGE
For Detroiters who experienced damage due to the flood or were impacted by it, the city encourages you to call 313-267-8000 or file a claim via their website.
For those in Dearborn, call 313-943-3030. Dearborn flood updates can be accessed on their website.
DON’T SWIM IN THE WATER
Detroiters have been strongly encouraged not to swim, play, or spend any amount of unnecessary time in the floodwater. On streets, the water may be dangerous as it may contain gasoline, motor oil, sharp objects, vehicles, and many other harmful things.
OFFER HELP TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY
For those of us mostly unaffected by the flooding, many of us still know some who are dealing with the after-effects. A few small ways to offer help are:
- Ride share gift cards for those whose vehicles have been damaged.
- A home-cooked meal and some flashlights for those without power.
- Help in cleaning out damaged materials from flooded homes.
- Aid in cleaning homes that flooded.
- A not-so-freezing shower for those without hot water.
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