TAVARES – More deaths occur due to flooding than because of any other severe weather-related hazard, according to the National Weather Service. That’s why Lake County’s Public Works Department is urging citizens to be prepared when flooding occurs, and to never underestimate the power of floodwaters.
“During seasonal heavy storms, tropical storms and hurricanes, Lake County’s roads may become flooded and could become dangerous to motorists,” said Nicholas McCray, Lake County’s Stormwater Project Manager. “Drivers may overestimate their ability to navigate flooded roads, putting too much stock in their vehicle’s ability.”
Most motorists lose control of their vehicles, including pickup trucks and SUVs, in just six inches of water, while 18-24 inches of moving water will force a vehicle off the road, said McCray. Sometimes, motorists ignore cautionary signs and drive around barricades, steering their vehicle directly into hazardous conditions.
The Lake County Public Works Department’s Stormwater Management Division is offering these tips for when flooding conditions occur:
• Monitor your NOAA Weather Radio for vital weather-related information.
• Get to higher ground as soon as possible.
• Avoid roads already flooded and never drive through flooded roadways.
• Be especially cautious when driving at night when it’s harder to recognize flood dangers.
• If heavy rain is forecast or occurring, move vehicles and camp sites away from waterways.
• “Turn Around Don’t Drown.”
For more information, contact Lake County Public Works at 352-483-9081, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the “Turn Around Don’t Drown” online toolbox at http://www.weather.gov/os/water/tadd/.