My Flood Experience... hoping you don't need to use it.


Several years ago, the area I lived in received 17 inches of rain in 24 hours and the knee deep trout stream near my house turned into a monster. We were woken by my golden retriever in the middle of the night as trees crashed down around us. We had made no preparations. I heard the roar of a waterfall as it cascaded into my basement. First I hurriedly ran all our camping gear upstairs (cook stove, lantern, etc.), then valuables were cleared from the first floor. After just 20 minutes it became eerily quiet... the basement was full... no more roar of water. I was about out of time. Anything remaining on the first floor was stacked on countertops and tables. Next, I ran outside and tied up the boat, it was already floating away, and we might need it to escape later. I wore a rock climbing harness to do this safely in the waist deep moving water. After the flood there was mud everywhere. The remnants of an old deck was left in my yard by the flood. I salvaged the old decking and used it to make a temporary side walk to keep us out of the mud as we cleaned up. I got old fire hose the fire department had culled out for free and screwed it to the boards... so in my case we really could roll up the sidewalk at night. I later made several more of these walkways, using pallet grade white oak. This was published as a tip for staying clean at muddy construction sites, but it was inspired by disaster: http://www.finehomebuilding.com/how-to/tips/roll-up-boardwalk.aspx?nterms=62092

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  • Rosanne
    on May 7, 2018

    Sorry to hear about the flood, but kudos on your ingenuity. I love the path so much I'd like to use it somewhere here, just because

  • Karen Underwood Stilley
    on Nov 25, 2019

    Great idea! Five years ago my husband and I bought a small cottage on pilings located on a creek which surrounds us on all sides. The road in is the only reason it isn't an island! My husband's health has failed tremendously since we moved to the cottage. We have been through several floods and are learning the hard way. Since he is in his seventies and in terrible health and I am in my sixties, any ideas like this are WONDERFUL! Thank you so much for sharing your idea!

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