You are most likely to find water in your basement during or after a heavy rainfall or during spring thaw when snow is melting. While the City invests in maintaining and improving the storm water infrastructure to reduce the risk of property flooding, there is no guarantee of complete protection against basement flooding. Citizens should take steps to reduce the risk of basement flooding and the damage that it can cause.
When cleaning up after a flood, put safety first! Floodwater can carry disease organisms, corrosive cleaning agents, irritants and sharp objects.
- Be sure to open windows and dress appropriately – wear overalls, gloves, protective eyewear and a mask.
- Water-damaged electrical and natural gas appliances can be hazardous. DO NOT use them until they are inspected by a qualified professional.
- The Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation offers a step-by-step guide for cleaning up after a basement flood.
Other things to consider:
- If floodwater is threatening gas-fired equipment (such as a furnace, hot water heater, clothes dryer, etc), contact your natural gas provider.
- You may want to call your insurance company. If possible, record details of property damage with photos or video. Your insurer will advise you on further actions.
- You may need to retain the services of a plumber, hire an electrician, and/or have inspections done by the natural gas or electricity companies. Get professional advice and let the professionals do their work. Only after authorities declare your basement safe should you enter it.