Fires in El Paso County have significantly changed the landscape, presenting risk of flooding and debris flow. Hillsides once protected by vegetation have been compromised and precipitation could have significant impacts on the landscape. Residents both in the burned area and those downstream of those areas should be prepared for potential flooding and are strongly urged to purchase flood insurance.
Download the Flood Preparedness Brochure
- Apply for FEMA assistance: www.disasterassistance.gov
- Videos: Flood Debris Cleanup
- City of Colorado Springs
- El Paso County
Before a Flood
- Create a plan to move everyone in your family to higher ground during a flood event and make sure each member of your family understands the plan.
- Have a 72-hour kit ready to go in case you need to evacuate – remember the 6 P’s in your planning – papers, pills (medicine), phone, pets, purse (money) and photos.
- Stay aware of local flash flood warnings through local radio, TV and on www.weather.gov/pueblo. Have a battery-operated radio available.
- Register your phone (land line or cell) for emergency notifications at www.elpasoteller911.org.
- Purchase flood insurance – most homeowners’ policies do not cover flooding. www.floodsmart.gov.
- Take photos of your belongings in case you need to file insurance claims after a flood event.
During a Flood
- Move to higher ground and avoid areas subject to flooding.
- Do not attempt to walk across flowing streams, drive through flooded roadways or allow children to play in drainage areas (just 6 inches of moving water can knock an adult off their feet).
- If water rises in your home before you can evacuate, move to the top floor, attic or roof.
- Stay aware of local flash flood warnings through local radio, TV and on www.weather.gov/Pueblo. Have a battery-operated radio available.
- If you come in contact with floodwaters, wash your hands with soap and disinfected water.
- If you see clogged inlets or other public drainage infrastructure problems, report it immediately to: City Streets Division (719) 385-5934 or El Paso County Public Service Dept. (719) 520-6891
- Reserve the use of 9-1-1 for life-threatening emergencies. For non-emergent needs requiring public safety response, call 444-7000 within City limits or 390-5555 in El Paso County. For information related questions, call Pikes Peak United Way Information & Referral at (719) 955-0742.
After a Flood
Re-entry and cleanup
- After a Flood: Precautions When Returning to Your Home and Cleanup
- Cleanup: Flood Water After a Disaster or Emergency
- CDC: Cleaning and Sanitizing with Bleach after an Emergency
- Tetanus Fact Sheet
- Management and Disposal of Flood Debris
- Cleanup after Residential Sanitary Sewer Backups
- CDPHE Disaster Recovery Guide for the Public
El Paso County Public Health does not regulate mold or inspect apartments or homes for mold. However, there are various resources that are useful in providing education about mold prevention and remediation. These are free resources and education recommended by Environmental Health Specialists related to flood cleanup:
- Mold Remediation Guidance: Health and Safety Essentials for Workers, Volunteers, and Homeowners
- CDC's Mold Website
- EPA: A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home
- Flood Cleanup: Avoiding Indoor Air Quality Problems
Tetanus and First Aid Guidance
After a flash flood, there is risk of injury as cleanup efforts begin. Tetanus is a concern for persons with both open and closed wounds, and a tetanus vaccination is recommended for all residents or first responders who have not had a documented dose within the past five years. Contact your medical provider to determine if you need the Tdap vaccine. You may also contact Public Health's Immunization Clinic.