ST. LOUIS - Following heavy rainfall and flash flooding overnight, the American Red Cross of Greater St Louis has been assisting those impacted by flooding across the St. Louis area. Currently, Red Cross staff and volunteers are providing support to multiple evacuation centers bringing in items such as water, snacks and blankets, as well as assistance with staffing.

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Red Cross will continue coordination with city and county officials as the water recedes, and will support accordingly to assist those impacted. Disaster Assessment teams are on stand-by to determine the extent of flood damage to area homes.

As families work to recover from this disaster, the Red Cross is continuing to collaborate with and connect families to partner agencies who can provide assistance for various needs following the flooding.


If you have been impacted by the overnight flooding, and need a safe place to go, please call 2-1-1 to find an evacuation center near you. In addition, please call 2-1-1 to report damage to your property.


Turn Around! Don't Drown!

Never walk, swim, or drive through floodwater. Turn Around! Don't Drown! Just 6 inches of fast-moving floodwater can knock you over, and 12 inches can carry your vehicle away.


Going Back to Your Home

If you have evacuated, return home only when authorities say it is safe to do so.

Wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots, and be cautious when cleaning up.

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Throw out items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected. This includes mattresses, carpeting, cosmetics, stuffed animals and baby toys.

Throw out all food, beverages and medicine exposed to flood waters and mud. When in doubt, throw it out.

Check the outside of your home before you enter. Look for loose power lines, broken or damaged gas lines, foundation cracks, missing support beams or other damage.

If the door is jammed, don’t force it open – it may be providing support to the rest of your home. Find another way to get inside.

Sniff for gas. If you detect natural or propane gas, or hear a hissing noise, leave the property immediately and get far away from it. Call the fire department after you reach safety.

If the weather is dry, open windows and doors to ventilate and/or dry your home.

If power is out, use a flashlight. Do not use any open flame, including candles, to inspect for damage or serve as alternate lighting.

Prevent Injuries

  • Understand the dangers you may face and keep your loved ones safe.
  • If you evacuated, wait for officials to say it is safe before going home.
  • Avoid fallen power lines, poles, and wires. They can electrocute you. Watch out for falling trees or other debris.
  • Use flashlights or battery-powered lanterns, rather than candles, to reduce fire risk.
  • Many injuries happen during cleanup. Wear protective equipment, like boots, long pants, work gloves, eyewear, and an N95 respirator to protect your lungs. Follow the advice of local public health officials.
  • Learn how to use equipment safely. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water because you could get electrocuted.
  • Cleaning up is a big job. Take care of yourself. Work with a partner and take frequent breaks.

Protect Your Health

  • Flooding can contaminate drinking water. Check with your local public health department about drinking water safety.
  • Don’t get sick from eating spoiled food. Throw out food that got wet or warm. When in doubt, throw it out!
  • Stay away from floodwaters. They may contain sewage, sharp items, and chemicals that can make you ill.
  • If your home was flooded:

- If possible, dry your home and everything in it as quickly as you can within 24 to 48 hours.

- If you cannot return to dry your home within 24 to 48 hours, you should assume you have mold growth. When it is safe to return home, completely dry everything, clean up the mold and make sure you don’t still have a moisture problem.

  • Keep wet areas well-ventilated. Throw away wet materials that can’t be repaired or dried.
  • Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal-burning devices should never be used inside a home, basement, garage, tent, or camper – or even outside near an open window. Carbon monoxide can't be seen or smelled, but it can kill you fast. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak, get to fresh air right away – do not delay.

Take Care of Yourself

  • It’s normal to have a lot of bad feelings, stress or anxiety.
  • Eat healthy food and get enough sleep to help you deal with stress.
  • You can contact the Disaster Distress Helpline for free if you need to talk to someone. Call or text 1-800-985-5990.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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