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Make no mistake – Los Angeles and the state at large is still in a drought, despite recent rains. Our record dry conditions are expected to continue through 2015, although last week’s storms suggest that Angelenos are in for a very wet winter. Heavy rain recently flooded areas near The Pacific Ocean, and as far east as Glendora. Fortunately, Torrance didn’t experience any serious damage or reported road closures, but if more storms like the ones that recently struck our city return as expected, local residents may not be so lucky next time.

Ask any storm victims and they’ll tell you: evacuating your home is not a pleasant experience. The next time we experience another bout of heavy and disruptive rain, here are some tips that everyone should keep in mind.

Elevate the furniture

The reality is that your home could very well flood during an extended period of heavy rain. So before the next storm hits, create a checklist of things to take care of ahead of time. At the top of the list you’ll want to include securing the furniture, as nobody wants to have their nice sofas, love seats, tables and chairs ruined by flooding water (in addition to being an inconvenience, it’ll hurt your home’s re-sale value). Generally, the rule of thumb is to keep them about a foot above the expected flood zone. The same goes for all of your important appliances. Whether it’s a water heater or washing machines, raise any appliances off the ground that may become shorted-out by water. Using cinder blocks or bricks (as well as the help of family and friends), lift your furniture and appliances onto the blocks, safely out of harm’s way.

Secure the home’s exterior

Torrance Plumbing Co doesn’t specialize in safety expertise, but as a plumber that Los Angeles can trust, our company knows a thing or two about how to deal with flooded properties. We can fix leaky faucets and clogged toilets, but we can also advise you on how to protect your home against the hazardous effects of heavy rain. For example, sand bags do a pretty good job of separating your home’s exterior from rushing H2O. The best part? They’re totally free. All you have to do is go to your local fire station and request them. Simply fill them about half way, and place them on the ground against the house. It’s also important that you fold the top flap, and place them flap-side down.

Evacuate

If your home is standing in the path of rushing water and you haven’t officially been ordered to evacuate, it can be tempting to wait it out. You want to do everything you can to protect your house. However, sticking around is potentially dangerous. You’re putting your life at risk, and at the end of the day, there’s not much you can do if water does make its way into your home. But in the event that you’re around for a flood, always seek higher ground. Get out of water’s way. It may look innocent enough, but often rushing tides can be deceptively powerful.