More deaths are caused by flooding than any other storm-related hazard, according the National Weather Service, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that more than half of all flood-related drownings happen when a vehicle is driven into hazardous water.
> Video above: The do's and don'ts if caught in a flash flood.
Driving through flood water is never recommended. Just eight to ten inches can lift an average-sized car and sweep it off the road, and two feet of water can carry away SUVs and trucks.
In addition, water and mud can hide unknown hazards underneath the surface including rocks, tree branches and other debris.
Any amount of flooding can cause problems for drivers, and because it is impossible to tell how deep water is or how fast it is moving, CDOT recommends waiting for water to subside before driving if the road is not visible.
Emergency highway closures can last for long periods of time, and CDOT recommends having an emergency kit at all times that contains the following:
- Water (bring additional water for pets)
Drivers waiting for a road to be cleared should not leave their cars unless necessary, and should never stand outside their vehicle in the median.
CDOT also recommends packing items to keep children occupied.
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