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Wake County News > Posts > ​Safety Tips for During and After the Storm
September 15
​Safety Tips for During and After the Storm

As Wake County continues to experience impacts from Florence, residents should keep the following safety tips in mind.

Food Safety

  • Check the temperature inside your refrigerator and freezer. Discard any perishable food items, such as meat, poultry, seafood, eggs or leftovers that have been above 40 degrees Fahrenheit for two or more hours.
  • Check each item separately. Throw out any food that has an unusual odor, color or texture, or feels warm to the touch. 
  • Check frozen food for ice crystals. The food in your freezer that partially or completely thawed may be safely refrozen if it still contains ice crystals or is 40 degrees F or below.
  • Do not eat any food that may have come into contact with flood water. This includes raw fruits and vegetables, cartons of milk and eggs.
  • Discard any food that is not in a waterproof container if there is any chance that it has come into contact with flood water.
  • Never taste a food to decide if it’s safe. When in doubt, throw it out.

Outdoor Safety

  • If a traffic signal is out, treat the intersection like a four-way stop, giving the right-of-way to the driver on the right.
  • Never drive or walk through flood waters. The water may contain chemicals, sewage and other contaminants, and just 12 inches of fast-moving water can carry away a small car.
  • Stay away from downed power lines. 
  • ​​​Use chainsaws only with proper training and safety equipment. Never operate chainsaws or perform other cutting operations with children or bystanders nearby.

Well Water Safety

  • If your well has been flooded, there is a risk of electrical shock and damage to your well or pump, and flood waters may have contaminated your well.
  • If your well has been flooded, Wake County recommends that you do not drink the water from your well until the well has been disinfected and tested for coliform bacteria. 
  • It is best to have a registered well contractor inspect and disinfect the well following a flood event. 
  • If it is not possible to have a registered well contractor inspect and disinfect the well, follow the guidance of the Environmental Protection Agency. Learn more here.

For more news and updates related to Hurricane Florence in Wake County, visit this website.

Wake County residents who have non-emergency questions or issues can contact Wake County at 919-856-7044.


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