Community News

Monday, March 7, 2011

Exercise caution when dealing with a flooded home

With a high risk of flooding anticipated throughout Manitoba this spring, home owners need to understand the potential dangers that can be created by a flooded house. If your home (or business) floods, remember that hazards may exist long after the water dissipates.

On its website, Manitoba Hydro has a number of tips for those with flooded homes. Here are a few critical ones (for the full list, visit

Flood Safety — Electrical

•If your basement floods, do not attempt to turn off the main power switch. Contact Manitoba Hydro to disconnect power at the pole. Stay clear of anything that could
conduct an electric current such as metal pipes, metal ladders, and even damp wood.

•After a flood: Even if water is not visible in a building, the interior structure may be soaked and still present an electrical hazard. Do not enter flooded basements or buildings that may contain energized electrical wiring or electrical appliances.
•Before re-entering the premises, contact Manitoba Hydro to ensure it is safe to do so. Have a qualified electrician inspect all wiring before turning power on.

Flood Safety — Natural Gas

•Preparing for a flood:
-Turn off the manual shut-off valve to each natural gas appliance.
-Shut off or disconnect them from the electrical supply, if applicable.
-To determine if it is necessary to shut off the natural gas service to your home, contact Manitoba Hydro.

•After a flood:
-If your natural gas appliances have not been flooded, it will be safe to turn on the manual shut-off valves, light pilot lights, and reconnect them to the electrical supply.
-If your natural gas appliances have been flooded, it will be necessary to make arrangements to have a licensed heating contractor inspect them and determine whether they need to be serviced or replaced.

For more information on how to prepare for a possible flood, what to do in case of evacuation and where to get support, visit

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