Houston Fire Department

Think. Don't Sink.

Think. Dont Sink. Graphic
Houston Fire Department and State Farm are once again encouraging citizens to "Think. Don't Sink" and steer clear of high water.

According to the National Weather Service, more than 60 percent of people who perished in 2011 floods were due to driving into high water. During the first six months of 2013, the Houston Fire Department responded to nearly 150 water rescues. In 2012, the Houston Fire Department responded to more than 220 water rescues.

Floods can roll boulders the size of cars, tear out trees, destroy buildings and bridges, and pose a significant threat to human lives.

Flash floods can be produced when slow moving or multiple thunderstorms occur over the same area. When storms move faster, flash flooding is less likely since the rain is distributed over a broader area. According to national statistics, almost half of all flash flood fatalities occur in vehicles. Contrary to popular belief, many people don't realize two feet of water on a bridge or highway can float most vehicles.

If is moving rapidly, your car, truck, or SUV can be swept off a roadway or a bridge and into a bayou or creek and if the vehicle stalls, leave it immediately and move to higher ground. Rapidly rising water may engulf the vehicle and vehicles can be swept away by as little as 24 inches of water.

If you can, simply avoid flooded areas — especially those with rapid water flow. Keep things safe and simple: reschedule your plans if you're aware of flooding in the area. If flooding occurs when you're on the road, stay on high ground and don't drive through any rapid water flow.

Swift moving, rising water on roadways can be a formidable hazard to motorists. Each year, lives are needlessly lost, people are injured, and vehicles are damaged by drivers attempting to navigate flooded streets.