Prepare for Flooding 

The City of Austin encourages you to prepare for flooding. Turn Around, Don't Drown!

 Here are some essential emergency preparedness tips for flooding season:  

  • Make a plan: Create an emergency plan with your family that includes designated meeting spots and emergency contacts. Make sure everyone knows what to do and practice your plan.  

  • Build an emergency kit: Prepare an emergency kit with essentials such as non-perishable food, water, a flashlight, first-aid supplies, and any necessary medications. Don't forget to include supplies for pets.  

  • Know Your Neighbors: By knowing your neighbors and building a strong network, you can increase your community's readiness level in an emergency. 

  • Stay informed: Keep your cell phone charged or a battery-powered radio to monitor local weather conditions. Sign up for emergency notifications from WarnCentralTexas.org to receive important information during emergencies. 

  • Protect your property: Secure loose items such as outdoor furniture and garden tools that could become dangerous projectiles during high winds. Keep trees trimmed to prevent damage from falling branches. 

  • Turn off utilities: Know how to turn off gas, water, and electricity in case of an emergency. 

  • Flood recovery: Safely check your property and/or automobile for any damage. If you see any damage, take photos for insurance purposes. Be aware of potential scams looking to take advantage of damage from the storm. Work with your insurance representative to find reputable businesses for any needed repairs.

Austin Watershed

Flash flooding can occur very quickly and without warning. It is important to be prepared in advance of a possible emergency.   

  • Clean out drains and gutters. Keep drainage easements clear of debris, and do not dump brush into creeks or open channels. Gather supplies to last for several days, including non-perishable foods, cleaning supplies, and water, in case utility service is interrupted in your area. 
  • Keep a charged cell phone or battery-powered radio close by to monitor local weather conditions. Sign up for regional emergency notifications from WarnCentralTexas.org to receive alerts. 
  • If you know you live in a floodplain or if your house has flooded in the past, keep important documents in a waterproof container and create password-protected digital copies. Move valuables to higher levels. Make a plan for your family and pets. Consider whether you want to stay at home or find shelter with friends or family. Prepare a go kit of emergency supplies, like food, water, medications, important documents, first aid supplies, pet food, and infant formula and diapers. If you decide to leave, turn off your electricity and gas, if it is safe to do so. Keep in mind the roads near your home may flood before your home does. Check ATXFloods.com for road closures. About 75% of flood fatalities occur in vehicles. 
  • If you must travel, stay away from creeks, trails, culverts, ponds, and other drainage infrastructure. If you encounter high water, do not drive through it and do not drive around any barricades. Please also remember to slow down on wet roads.
  • At night, it can be difficult to see if water is covering the road. Avoid contact with floodwater due to potential health risks, including exposure to hazardous materials and bacteria. If water is rising, get to higher ground.  

Social Media

  • Follow @atxfloods on Twitter for real time updates on road closures. 

Austin 911 

  • If you need emergency assistance, call 911. 

Austin 3-1-1

  • To report current flooding issues, downed or malfunctioning traffic signals, or debris in the roadway, report the issue on the Austin 3-1-1 mobile app, or call 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000.    

Austin Code

Common weather-related issues related to property damage may include no hot water, burst pipes, and cracks in the ceiling or walls. One way to prevent damage is to proactively follow these property maintenance tips:  

  • Test your gas service lines annually for possible leaks.  
  • Check if your furnace is operating correctly.  
  • Check if the boilers are working as intended.  
  • Check if you have smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.  

Tenants who experience unresolved code violations, can request a Code Inspector by calling Austin 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000. Visit the Austin Code Safe and Sound webpage for more property maintenance winter tips.

Austin Water

Austin Water encourages customers to take steps now to prepare for weather hazards. Following a few, easy steps now will help customers protect their property and prevent damage.

Locate your water shutoff. Locate the water main shutoff valve and keep it clear of debris and obstacles at all times. For most homes, the property owner’s shutoff valve is on your side of the water meter at the meter box. For renters, please consult with your property manager. If you cannot find your shutoff valve or if it is damaged, then you should be prepared to access the City shutoff valve in the meter box in an emergency. You may need a water meter key to open the meter box, which can be purchased at most hardware stores. Watch a video about how to locate your water shutoff.  

Stay Informed: 

Austin Energy

In case of a power outage:  

  • Unplug appliances and turn off most lights to avoid overloading circuits when power is restored.  
  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed during an outage and follow FDA guidelines for food safety.

Electrical Safety Tips:  

  • Do not drive over or go near a downed power line, as it could be energized. Call 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000 if you see a downed line to report it. If the line is sparking, call 911.  
  • If you see limbs on wires or see downed tree limbs, please call 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000 to report them.

  Stay Informed   

Austin Transportation

Before driving during heavy rains: 

  • Turn Around, Don't Drown. Cars can be washed away in as little as six inches if water.
  • Check for updated weather conditions.
  • Avoid low water crossings and do not drive, walk or swim around barricades.
  • Check tire pressure and tread.
  • Make sure windshield wipers and lights are functioning.   
  • Keep an emergency kit with the following items in your vehicle: 
    • Jumper cables
    • Flares or reflective triangle
    • Car cell phone charger
    • Cat litter or sand for better tire traction 

Austin Travis County EMS

The best advice for flooding season is to remain indoors if at all possible and remain “weather aware.” Stay tuned to local weather forecasts for weather advisories, traffic updates, and road closures.  

Keep your phone and other media devices fully charged in case of a power outage and consider a battery- or solar-powered weather alert or AM/FM radio for your residence to keep you informed in the event of a power failure.