Know how to prepare, protect yourself during monsoon season

Moving water one-to-two feet deep will carry away most vehicles in a flash flood. (Submitted photos)

Different aspects of a monsoon presents different hazards so know what to do to protect yourself and your family during monsoon season.

Residents should be prepared for the possibility of severe weather in the area and adhere to severe weather warnings to take action, according to a press release.

Monsoons bring thunderstorms, dust storms and flash floods that are typically short in duration but can quickly develop and leave an aftermath, the release stated.

“Monsoon storms continue to present hazardous situations,” Queen Creek Fire and Medical Deputy Chief Vance Gray said in a prepared statement. “One of the biggest hazards is driving during a monsoon storm. Motorists are reminded to never cross flooded roadways, follow all posted signage and pull aside during dust storms.”

During a monsoon, dust storms can create wind gusts exceeding 40 mph that dramatically reduce visibility; dangerous flash floods are responsible for most flash flood deaths in vehicles since moving water one-to-two feet deep will carry away most vehicles; and lighting can strike several miles away from a storm, the release noted.

Here’s some important safety tips to remember:

Dust Storms-

  • Move indoors if possible and stay away from the windows.
  • If driving, pull off the road and get as far to the right as possible.
  • Turn off the car and headlights.
  • Set the parking brake and keep your foot off the brake pedal.
  • Flash floods-
  • Travel should be avoided whenever possible during flash floods.
  • If you must travel, do not drive on flooded roads or go around barricades.
  • Do not play, or allow children to play in floods. Not only can flood water pose potential health risks, six inches of fast moving water can knock over an adult.
    Residents are reminded to bring a shovel and only fill the bags halfway with sandbags that are available at Fire Station 2, 24787 S. Sossaman Road.

Lightening-

  • If you hear thunder, move inside or take cover in a hardtop vehicle.
  • If you are unable to get indoors, avoid water and metal as they are conductors of electricity.
  • Stay clear of trees, power lines and telephone poles.
  • Remain inside for at least 30 minutes after the last thunder.

Downed Power Lines-

  • If you encounter a downed power line, stay at least 100 feet away from it.
  • If a power line falls on your car while you are inside, do not touch anything metal in the car. Stay inside until professional help arrives.
    For more information, SRP provides an outage map for customers with estimated restoration times: SRPnet.com.

Also, tree failure is common during monsoon storms so ISA certified arborist, Cathy Rymer will host the Saving Your Trees from Monsoon Damage Workshop on avoiding common mistakes that contribute to tree failure, 9 a.m.-noon, Saturday, June 23 at Historic Town Hall, 22350 S. Ellsworth Road.

The workshop is free for Town of Queen Creek utility customers, but registration is required at QueenCreek.org/WaterSmart; or email ConservetheQC@QueenCreek.org; call 480-358-9455.

Go to: QueenCreek.org for additional details.

The Queen Creek Independent is mailed each month to 35,000 homes.

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