PHOENIX— In Arizona, the months of August and September are full of hot, humid days, rife with the risk of wind storms, dust clouds, rain, and floods. While it can flood any time of the year, the risk is higher during the monsoon season.
Many know Arizona as a wildfire state, but flooding is the most destructive and expensive disaster we face,” said Wendy Smith-Reeve, director of the Arizona Division of Emergency Management. “All of Arizona is vulnerable to flooding. We must all prepare for it, and take steps to reduce the risk.”
Flooding is not isolated to river basins or in regions that get a lot of rain and snow; it can happen anywhere, from rural towns to metropolitan cities. Flooding causes millions of dollars in damage to infrastructure and personal property each year, as well as posing a risk to public safety.
The Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs (DEMA) encourages preparedness for any type of emergency year-round. DEMA’s current campaign, Anytime, Anywhere, promotes flood awareness and preparedness through the use of roadside billboards, social media, websites, and flyers.
DEMA works to reduce the impact of emergencies and disasters on people, property and the environment, but this cannot be done alone. Families who prepare for emergencies are more resilient in their response and recovery when a disaster strikes. Arizonans are encouraged to take the following preparedness steps to stay safe:
- Make a Family Communication Plan that includes an out-of-town contact and evacuation route.
- Build an emergency supplies kit with enough food, water and daily medication(s) to last at least three days. Create a smaller, travel-sized kit that you can take in the event of an evacuation.
- Be informed of local hazards and emergency plans at your work and your child’s school. Contact your local emergency management office and sign up to receive emergency notifications.
- Inspire others by your positive preparedness example.
For more information on how you can prepare for and mitigate against the potential impacts of flooding, visit FloodSafeAZ.org.