By Engr. John Cee Onwualu (FNSE)
Flooding is a very serious issue in Nigeria, as it can lead to significant damage to property and even loss of life.
Floods can occur due to heavy seasonal rains or from overflowing bodies of water such as rivers and oceans. Flooding can be a major problem for those living in areas with low-lying land or in cities where there is poor drainage.
In order to handle flooding in any area of Nigeria, there are a variety of strategies that can be implemented. This article lists 7 ways that you can handle flooding in any area of Nigeria.
These strategies can be used by individuals, organizations, and governments to reduce the destruction caused by flooding and ensure the safety of those living in affected areas.
Whether you are living in a rural area or a city, these strategies will help you to be better prepared for a flood and handle it in the most effective way possible.
“When it comes to flooding in Nigeria, prevention is key. We must work together to develop a comprehensive plan that includes early warning systems, improved infrastructure, and risk management strategies to ensure we are better prepared to handle future floods.” John Cee Onwualu
1. Utilize sandbags to limit the amount of water entering buildings
Sandbags are an effective tool to help keep water out of buildings, and they can be used to divert water away from buildings and other areas.
Sandbags should be placed around the outside of buildings, and in areas where water would otherwise enter. As sandbags are not permanent solutions, they should be checked regularly and replaced when needed.
2. Elevate electrical components and other sensitive items to avoid water damage
Electrical components, furniture, appliances, and other sensitive items should be lifted off the ground and placed in elevated areas to avoid water damage.
If possible, use thick plastic sheeting to cover items before moving them to higher grounds. The plastic sheeting will help shield the items from further water damage.
Additionally, it is imperative to unplug all electrical appliances and devices to avoid electric shock.
Furthermore, it is strongly recommended to turn off the main water valve to prevent water from entering the property.
3. Identify any potential sources of flooding and take steps to mitigate them
One of the most important steps to take in handling flooding is to understand the potential sources of flooding in any particular area. This could include rivers, natural creeks, and other sources of water that could potentially rise and overflow.
Mitigation measures could include constructing berms, installing drainage systems, or even dredging.
It is also important to consider factors such as the newly constructed buildings, paving, roads and other impediments to natural drainage that could serve as sources of flooding.
Understanding these potential sources of flooding in any area can greatly reduce the risk of a flood event.
4. Ensure adequate drainage and water runoff is maintained
Ensuring adequate drainage and water runoff is an essential step in preventing flooding. Poor drainage and runoff can lead to an accumulation of water in certain areas, which can quickly lead to flooding.
To maintain adequate drainage, check the area for clogged drains, overgrown vegetation, and any other blockages that may impede water flow and cause flooding.
Additionally, when constructing buildings or other structures, ensure that the design allows for proper water runoff, and that any wall, pavement, or other materials used are designed to be water-resistant.
5. Regularly inspect your building for any signs of water damage
Water damage can be caused by flooding or excessive moisture, and it can cause long-term damage to your building’s structure, insulation, and electrical and plumbing systems.
Make it a priority to regularly check your building for any signs of water damage and address any issues that may arise.
Additionally, address any existing water damage as soon as possible and make sure to use only qualified professionals to repair any damage and prevent it from happening again.
6. Develop and practice an emergency plan if flooding occurs
As flooding can occur unexpectedly, it is important to have an emergency plan in place prior to a disaster.
Developing and practising an emergency plan is especially important in areas of Nigeria that are prone to flooding. The plan should include where to go, what to do, and how to stay in contact with family and friends.
It is also important to include in the plan, steps to take after the flooding has subsided, such as returning home safely, disposing of any materials damaged by the flooding, and cleaning up the area.
Taking the time to plan in advance can help reduce the impact of flooding in any area of Nigeria.
7. Have an emergency kit with supplies readily available
Have an emergency kit with supplies readily available. Flooding can lead to a loss of power, food shortages, and other disasters, so it’s important to have a well-stocked emergency kit ready to go.
Make sure your kit includes food, water, and medical supplies, as well as a battery-powered radio and flashlights. Blankets, clothing, and other items may also be helpful.
Additionally, make sure you have any important documents, such as medical records and insurance information, stored in a waterproof container.
Read Also: Recommendations for Stormwater Management and Control
In conclusion, it is essential to be proactive in protecting your home and belongings from the impact of flooding. Taking the necessary steps to prepare for and mitigate flooding is the best way to protect yourself, your family and your property.
By following the above tips and advice, you can ensure that any area of Nigeria is prepared for flooding and equipped to handle it in the best way possible.