8 Ways That Flooding Can Be Prevented During This Rainy Season - Xpino's Blog

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8 Ways That Flooding Can Be Prevented During This Rainy Season

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Although nature can be unpredictable, the Weather Department officers are doing their very best to assist in saving lives and property. Even with their state-of –the-art weather forecasting gadgets, year in year out we still lose plenty of valuable lives and property to incessant flood outbreaks.

By simple definition, Flood is a natural event or occurrence where a piece of land (or area) that is usually dry land, suddenly gets submerged under water. There are various categories of flood. While some can occur suddenly and recede quickly, others take days or even months to build and discharge. Bottom line: Flood damage is difficult to recover from. 

Rather than wait to start counting our losses and begging government for aids, we can prevent the chaotic outcomes of flooding. Each time there are more rains than the drainage system can take, there can be floods. Sometimes, there is heavy rain for a very short period that results in floods. In other times, there may be light rain for many days and weeks and can also result in floods.

How can we prevent flooding?

Passenger bus wading through flood
Passenger bus wading through flood
 1.    Construct buildings above flood levels: It is important to note that water naturally flows from high areas to lower areas. This means that the excess water from the high areas will eventually (if not disastrously) find its way to all the low areas. Building regulation requires that buildings are at least 600millimetres from the natural ground level (i.e. in a normal topography). However, we have seen situations whereby even the roads are higher than the buildings where people live.

2.    Clean the gutters/drainage systems regularly: most gutters and drainage have been filled with plastic bottles and other waste materials.
This common attitude is akin to shooting oneself on the foot. You can try this simple practical at home: fill your wash hand basin with some articles then turn on the tap. You will discover that at some point the water will start spilling over. That is exactly what happens in particle-filled drainage. It appears that human activities hinder the free flow of rain water from the streets into the water channels (rivers, oceans, etc).

3.    Buildings should not be erected on unapproved sites: there have been many incidences of persons building houses to block the canals and water passage ways. It is important that builders acquire permission before buildings are erected. This will ensure that waterways are not blocked. The onus rests on the Town Planning Authority and the State Governments to effect necessary changes before lives and properties are jeopardized just because of the act of one ‘unreasonable’ house owner. A stitch in time, they say…saves nine.

4.    Embrace the reality of climate change: climatic conditions the world over have changed, some insanely.
Flooding, Health, Lagos, NEMA, Nigeria, Xpino Media Network,
Floods are known to have brought wild animals into streets
These changes have contributed to a rise in extreme weather events. The insane floods we recently experience is traceable to climatic changes. So, as the governments are ‘pursuing efforts’ to limit the increase of unprecedented weather dramas, we too should be in the know. Look up how to key into the climate change crusade.


 5.    Improve soil conditions: Inappropriate soil management, machinery and animal hooves can cause soil to become compacted so that instead of absorbing moisture, holding it and slowly letting it go, water runs off it immediately. Well drained soil can absorb huge quantities of rainwater, preventing it from running into rivers.

6.    Create an artificial waterway for flood: if your house is located along a slope, note that if water can find its way down the slope it can definitely via off the road and pay you an unexpected visit. What should you do? Steer the water way off your building in a way that it will ‘naturally’ find its way to the bottom of the slope where (hopefully) no one is living. A good old-fashioned ditch might also do the trick, especially if you’re in an area that is known for heavy and prolonged rains. Given the recent extremes in weather, it’s probably best to prepare for the worst and hope that you’ve over shot.

7.    The government and individuals should plant trees: flooding increase due to deforestation. The trees help to keep floods in check but human activities have drastically reduced the tree population. Wetlands should also be maintained, they help to act as sponges – soaking up moisture.

Trees, shrubs and grass help protect the land from erosion by moving water. People in low-lying areas must be encouraged to use a lot of vegetation to help break the power of moving flood water and also help reduce erosion.

8.    Create retaining walls: in some places, retaining walls or rocks can help to hold back water during flooding.


Flooding, Health, Lagos, NEMA, Nigeria, Xpino Media Network,

Flood protection is the duty of everyone. Please in case of emergency, you can reach the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) via:
Email: info@nema.gov.ng or nemapress@yahoo.com
0800CALLNEMA, 080022556362

(Image credit: http://nema.gov.ng, www.cnn.com, www.scrapetv.com, www.insidebusinessonline.com)

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