Flood waters can be very damaging to your home and your health. Exposure to mold can lead to asthma attacks, eye and skin irritation, and allergic reactions. It can lead to severe infections in people with weakened immune systems. Flood water may carry sewage or chemicals into your home. This contaminated water could expose you or your family to viruses, bacteria, disease carriers (such as mosquitos), parasites, and mold. You can protect yourself and your family by following these steps:
Protect against hazards
People with breathing problems like asthma or who have weakened immune systems should stay away from moldy sites. Children should not take part in disaster cleanup work. Check for loose power lines or gas leaks. Make sure the electricity and gas are turned off. Look for sagging ceilings and floors or other structural problems. Watch out for wet, muddy, or slippery floors. Shower and change your clothes. This precaution will help you avoid carrying mold and other hazards back to your current living quarters.
Protect your skin
Wear protective gloves (non-latex, vinyl, nitrile, or rubber). Do not touch mold or moldy items with bare hands.
Protect your eyes
Wear goggles that provide complete eye protection. Choose goggles designed to keep dust and small particles out. Safety glasses or goggles that have open vent holes will not protect you against dust and small particles.