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Colorado flood

  • Why I Prepare: Lessons from the Colorado Flood Part 4

     2013 Colorado Flood image


    In light of the recent Colorado Floods and all the damage that has occurred as a result, we want to share a series of posts from one Colorado woman’s perspective. Opinions expressed are hers and do not necessarily reflect those of Emergency Essentials. If you lived through the recent flooding in Colorado and want to share your story, please email

    We asked Sandy what she learned about emergency preparedness and how she plans to continue to prepare in the future:

    They say it takes a village to raise a child.  It also takes a village to come together in an emergency. I saw communities starting to band together to help each other, and they need to continue to do so.  The trickledown effect from the Colorado floods is going to be felt for many years to come, because most of the farm lands are all under water.  It could take years for them to be cleaned up and productive again without community involvement.

    I am glad I could enlighten so many people in the past week about being ready for emergencies and helping each other during an emergency. It took a natural disaster for me to see that so many people were not even prepared for the first 72 hours. I learned that knowledge is power and survival.  The more you know the more you can help yourself, your family, and others to survive—and people will actually listen to you.

    Everyone needs to start preparing now and continue preparing, even when they think they have prepared enough. Before a disaster hits, everyone should think about what they really need, talk with their neighbors, and slowly put their emergency plan into action. You don’t have to go broke getting everything all at once to prepare. And even though food will be important to you during an emergency, there are other items important to your survival that you should stock up on as well.

    One thing that I learned from the flood is that having backup supplies is good to think about as you create an emergency plan. These backups should be stored in a different location than your home. It’s great to have your stock right with you so you can watch it, but you can lose it pretty fast in situations like this flood.

    Everyone should be prepared for every kind of emergency. You can be prepared by educating yourself on what to do. The reason I prepare is because I don’t want to be a victim. I am joining an emergency rescue organization so I can be better prepared in the future.  I want to help others as much as I can and have advance notice for any future emergencies.

    After living through the Colorado flood, I guess my motto would be “Help each other be prepared for anything.”


    For more information on how to prepare yourself, community, and loved ones for a flood, check out these articles:

    What to do Before, During, and After a Flood

    Planning for an Emergency

    Neighborhood Emergency Plan (downloadable)

  • Why I Prepare: Lessons Learned from the Colorado Floods Part 3

    House in 2013 Colorado Flood

    In light of the recent flooding in Colorado and all the damage that has occurred as a result, we want to share a series of posts from one Colorado woman’s perspective. Opinions expressed are hers and do not necessarily reflect those of Emergency Essentials. If you lived through the recent Colorado floods and want to share your story, please email


    The damage caused by the Colorado floods will last for many, many years.  The damage you see on TV is nothing like seeing it in person.  So many people lost everything.  Communities are gone.  Where there were once fields of corn there are now just large lakes, even a week later.  Homes are still under water; roads and bridges are just gone; and businesses are destroyed.

    The weekend of September 20th, I went to see if there was anything I could do to help.  The images that most affected me were of two farm houses and their barns still under water.  Their fields had turned into lakes.  They lost everything.

    Landfills were full of so many destroyed memories.  I saw Flood Assistance signs directing people to tents that would give them clothing, food, and assistance to help with additional relief.  It was so sad to see. But it was also exciting to see as I witnessed so many people wanting to help.  I saw entire communities working together to help each other.  People helping people they didn’t even know, and wanting nothing in return.

    As I watched these people working together to clean up the devastating effects of this storm, I was trying to think about how someone could ever prepare for an emergency of this magnitude. The flood victims needed food, warmth, and a roof over their heads. I started to think that if my family and I had been affected as badly by the storm that all the goodies we have in our bug out bags wouldn’t be enough.

    I decided to help out at the tents giving clothing and food. I listened to stories from people that had it so much worse than me. They all talked about how thankful they were.  They said, “It could have been so much worse.”

    Many organizations teach us to be prepared for emergencies, but this was big.  You need to get everyone in your community involved, not just a few people.  Everyone should know how to prepare for emergencies. It’s that old saying “It takes a village.” After the floods, I contacted my neighbors to schedule a meeting to start teaching them all how to prepare for future emergencies. We have to start somewhere.

    Note from the editor: We offer free emergency planning resources for families and neighborhoods on our Downloads page. We encourage you to create a plan as soon as possible—even a very basic plan will help—and provide you a foundation to build on. 

    Check out the rest of the series:

    Why I Prepare: Lessons from the Colorado Floods, Part 1

    Why I Prepare: Lessons from the Colorado Floods, Part 2

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