Severe Weather Guide: Safety Tips

It's never too early to prepare your family and your home for severe weather or natural disasters. Here are our safety tips for storms, fires and floods.

water and electricity don't mix cars and tipped over power line

Water and Electricity Don’t Mix

  • If you’re wet, barefoot or standing in water, don’t use anything electric or try to plug in power cords.
  • If you’re working outdoors or in an area with any dampness, use GFCI-protected outlets or extension cords.
  • Stay away from downed power lines.
  • Don’t walk in a flooded basement if the power is still on or could go on.
  • Turn off the hot water heater (electric or gas) if there is any chance of flood.

Starting a fire


  • Avoid using candles. If a fire starts, there may be no phone service, the fire department may not be able to get to you, and fire hydrants may not be working.
  • Don’t ever use a charcoal or propane grill in the house.
  • Turn off propane or natural gas to the house only if instructed to do so by authorities or if you smell gas. Let a pro turn the gas back on after the storm.
  • Don’t light matches until you are sure that there is no damage to your gas lines.

car pick-up truck in water flood


  • Don’t walk through fast-moving water; as little as 6 inches can knock you off your feet.
  • If your car stalls in rising water, get out and get to high ground.
  • Don’t walk through a flooded area with bare feet or any open cuts.
  • Don’t let your pets drink or swim in floodwater.

Information for this post was made in collaboration with Lowes for a severe weather guide.

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