Health Risks of Flood Disasters

Health Risks of Flood Disasters

Health Risks of Flood DisastersEverywhere around the globe, rain represents an important source of water for humanity and an annual stock for agriculture activities. However, rain may turn into a catastrophe if it exceeds a specified limit and forms floods. Despite the numerous studies that have been conducted, the response to the flood disasters has not achieved much success so far. Many countries have failed to address this annual problem. Knowing accurately the rain seasons has not helped us very much in avoiding the risk of torrential rain or even dealing with it. As a large amount of rain falls continuously in a short time, the sewage channels will not be capable to drain the excess amount of water in the streets.

The nature of the city may increase the disastrous effects of floods. Flat cities become like a large swimming pool to the extent of submerging some houses completely. In cities built on a group of plateaus and valleys, the calamity is greater here. The slopes form some similar to raging stream running angrily downward, sweeping everything that comes in its path. Every year, hundreds of cities and towns are hit by devastating floods that washed away the soil from underneath entire neighborhoods and make houses like leaves blown in the wind. 

Flooding and Human Health

The impacts of floods on human health depend on many factors. Drowning, serious injuries, hypothermia, and animal bites are the direct health impacts of floods. Other health hazards also are connected to the evacuation efforts and health infrastructure, like losing some workers and suffering from shop loss of health supply such as essential drugs and medicine. Indirect effects of flooding may include infected wounds, complications of injury, poisoning, poor mental health, communicable diseases, and starvation. Repeated flooding in certain geography without addressing it may lead, in the long run, to chronic diseases, disabilities, poor mental health, and poverty-related diseases including malnutrition.

There are three ways to deal with the dangers of floods:

deal with the dangers of floodsAvoidance:

It is to avoid urbanizing in areas vulnerable to disastrous floods, bearing in mind that they may not be feasible in the case of high population densities.


It refers to prevent or reduce losses resulting from flood disasters and depend on the technological side represented in setting up a group of establishments to resist expected floods such as bridges, dams, and such as; taking into account the economic viability because these installations have high costs.


It depends on reducing losses by following the below points:

  • Land-use planning in flood-prone areas
  • Specify settings for the localization of these uses
  • Determine the appropriate construction methods
  • Direct and alert individuals in times of flooding.

It can be said that the dangers of floods can be avoided if we follow the first or second method. However, reducing flooding damage is possible if we follow the third method too. It should be noted that merging and mixing between the three methods leads to providing the most appropriate means to achieve the required protection and reducing the costs of the required protection and reduce the risk at the same time.

Measures to be taken at the individual level:

  • Do not ignore warnings and instructions that are announced by official meteorological institutions.
  • When floods occur, you must closely follow the bulletins and newsfeeds issued by the official authorities and follow up on updates regarding affected and dangerous streets and cities.
  • Do not venture driving your car in floods.
  • Avoid low places that the flood may reach in a short time.
  • Completely cut off the electricity to your house or office.
  • Stay away from cables of any kind on the street.
  • Your skill in swimming should not entice you to jump in floods to save people, animals, or belongings because floodwater is sweeping, muddy, and may cause the death of both the rescuing and rescued person as well.
  • In areas that witness regular flooding, they advise residents to install flood protective equipment, such as flood barriers and blocks, water gates, water inflated barriers, or sum pumps.

Benefits of having one portable sump pump to avoid floods:

Protect belongings:

Sometimes floods are very dangerous for irreparable and irreplaceable items. Having  a portable sump pump at home gives you peace of mind from this possibility.

Protect the house structure:

Water can be seriously harmful to the structure of your house. A sump pump keeps you away from a major possible refurbishment and renovations that may occur as a result of even slight flooding.

Protect your health:

The leftover floodwater carries a lot of bacteria, germs, planktons, and parasites. A sump pump avoids the problem of leftover floodwater that can bring about some serious illnesses, such as respiratory problems and allergic reactions.

Raise property value:

Even if your house has not experienced any flood before, the availability of a sump pump can improve the value of your house. It leaves the buyers with the impression that the owner has been taking care of his house.

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