T.A.D.D. (Turn Around Don't Drown)

Anytime storms hit, we must all be aware of the dangers and hazards that come with the storms. Along with the risk of thunder, lightning, hail, and strong winds, there is rain. Storms and rain showers can cause area rivers and streams to rise quickly. Every year over 100 people are killed and many more are injured by trying to drive across flooded roads. This does not only apply to vehicles. You should never try to swim, canoe, kayak, etc... in flooded waters. The current is much stronger than normal and can easily hide dangerous debris such as branches, large rocks, and even complete trees can travel downstream entirely submerged. Please see the following videos.


This video is from the dashcam of storm chaser Chris Novy. He was very fortunate that the crash actually caused his windows to break and he was able to escape. As expressed by the Police Car that was visible right before the accident happened, you cannot count on emergency services to secure every hazardous area. Most likely, the officer did not realize how dangerous the water level had become. The statement below is directly from Chris.
"This is a view from my D-TEG dashcam. I approached a flooded road and made a quick U-turn rather than driving [all the way] into the water. This was a naturally smart move. Unfortunately my turn resulted in me plunging off a hidden embankment and splashing nose-first right into a swollen creek where I sunk straight to the bottom, I traveled several hundred feet underwater with the car quickly filling up. At one point I was completely surrounded by water and just holding my breath in the darkness. Somehow the driver-side and passenger-side windows broke and I was flushed from the vehicle. I surfaced after a bit and found myself racing down the creek. A cop called out to me and I was able to swim to him and his life-saving grab."



The next video comes to us from our friends at Newton County Rescue and Recovery and it shows how quickly a victim can get swept away in Mild Flood Waters. Their Chief, Justin Weston, suited up with a camera attached to his helmet to demonstrate the dangers of flood waters. You should never swim, canoe, kayak, etc in flooded waters and use extreme caution when walking or working near flooded areas.




In addition to being swept away, roads that have flooding over them can also be washing out below. This next video was filmed by a Trooper showing a road washing out. When he shared the video on Facebook, someone commented how it took about 2-3 minutes before the road failed. While this is technically true, it took 2-3 minutes in the video with NO TRAFFIC. The road was already washing out below well before it collapsed. Add the 3000+ pounds from a car or the 5000+ pounds of a minivan or SUV with a family in it trying to cross that road with nothing below the asphalt to support it the road would have failed immediately.






While area Emgerency Service agencies in partnership with the area Road Districts and Public Works offices, do everything they can to close or block flooded roads, DO NOT ASSUME SINCE A ROAD IS NOT BLOCKED, IT IS OK. If you see water over the roadway, remember TADD (Turn Around Don't Drown). 

Water is an extremely powerful force that should never be challenged under any circumstances. During floods, water can easily hide dangerous pieces of debris such as entire trees, logs, even cars it has already washed away. In addition to the hidden debris, the pressure water can apply to an object or your vehicle can very easily wash a you off the road even in only a few inches of water.