Posted Monday, July 1, 2019, at 9:38 AM
Community Emergency Response Teams are trained to spot dangerous weather and take necessary precautions. They report oncoming weather and support emergency responders when weather-related disaster strikes. One event that can become a personal disaster is flash flooding. CERT teams are trained to be aware of the dangers of flash flooding and to avoid hazardous road conditions created by such flooding.
Flash floods lead in the number of deaths caused by weather-related events. It used to be lightning. Back in the 1940s, lightning killed 3,293 people while flooding killed 619. By the 1990s this changed. Lightning killed 592 and floods 876. In 2018 the National Weather Service reports that 84 people were killed by flooding. Lightning killed 20. So far this year there have been 67 flood-related deaths and lightning killed five persons. The statistics are going down. The thing to remember is that flooding is still the number one killer.
How is this so? The top reason is driving through water. People have been testing state Highway 41. Someone even posted on social media the water flowing over Highway 41. One person’s truck was moved sideways by the flood as they tested if passage could be made through the water. If the road is flooded, consider it blocked. Take an alternate route. It only takes a few inches of flowing water to sweep a vehicle off a road and into deeper water.
Note: This article was submitted by CERT trainer Art Madden. For more information about the free CERT training course, contact Saline County Emergency Management Director Tony Day at 660-236-1955 between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.