Impact News

Summer 2000 Keeping your community prepared for disasters

 Are you ready for a flood?

For most of us, a flood might not seem to be a real threat, but keep in mind: there are over 300 miles of coastline and hundreds of miles of rivers in Rhode Island, making the Ocean State vulnerable to the whims of storms and heavy rains.
Preparation is the key when dealing with a flood or any other natural disaster. Project Impact has prepared a list of preparation tips that should keep you, your loved ones, and your property as safe as possible during a flood.

  • Learn about your area’s flood risk.
  • Talk to your insurance agent.
  • Develop an evacuation plan.
  • Keep insurance policies, documents,
    and other valuables in a safe deposit box.
  • Avoid building in a flood plain unless
    you elevate and reinforce your home.
  • Raise your furnace, water heater, and
    electric panel to higher floors if they are
    in areas of your home that may flood.
  • Install check valves in building sewer
    traps to prevent floodwater from backing up
    the drains of your home.
  • Seal walls in basements with water-
    proofing compounds to avoid seepage
    through cracks.


Flood Safety

  • Stay out of areas subject to flooding.
  • f outdoors, climb to high ground and
    stay there.
  • If you come upon a flowing stream where
    water is above your ankles, stop, turn
    around and go another way.

 Project Impact preparing
Rhode Island for disasters

Local communities take lead in readying
R.I. citizens and businesses for disaster...

For years, people have felt there was nothing they could do in the face of surging floodwaters or the 140 mile-an-hour winds of a hurricane. The mindset was to let the storm take its toll and then work to rebuild the community following the devastation.
Recently, that philosophy has undergone a dramatic change with goverment and non-profit relief organizations combining their resources to encourage businesses and citizens to help reduce the effects of natural disasters.
The result is Project Impact, an initiative developed by James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
This initiative includes a national awareness campaign, the selection of pilot communities that demonstrate the benefits of hazard mitigation through a partnership approach, and an outreach effort to businesses and communities using a new book that offers guidelines to follow to become disaster-resistant.
Some Rhode Island cities have become early partners in the Project Impact campaign, with more expected to soon follow suit. Warwick, Providence, and Pawtucket were the first three local cities to join with Project Impact to better educate the people in their communities.
While Rhode Island has been fortunate to sidestep most natural disasters over the last few years, history tells us that we are vulnerable to potentially devastating occurences. Hurricanes have taken hundreds of human lives and caused hundreds of millions of dollars of damage this century in Rhode Island.
Hazard mitigation and preparedness is everyone’s business. It is only through a partnership between government, businesses, and the private sector that Project Impact will succeed. Thank you for joining us in this crucial initiative that will save lives and property in Rhode Island in the event that disaster strikes our state.

Impact News is a publication of Project Impact
For more information on disaster preparedness, visit the following web sites:;; and

Take action to avoid hurricane damage

Hurricanes bring flooding rains and high winds. Once a hurricane hits, it’s too late to protect your home and belongings. Project Impact offers preventive steps communities and businesses can take to reduce disruption and loss. There are things you can do to change the way your community deals with hurricanes.

Know your hurricane risk

Identifying potential hurricane hazards ahead of time can reduce the dangers of serious injury or loss of property from flood and wind damage. The first step is to determine your risk for hurricanes. Start by asking your local emergency management office, contacting your building department or going to our web site at and clicking on the “Do you Know Your Risk” icon to learn about potential risk areas for hurricanes in your community.

Be prepared

 For more information about Project Impact
in your area, contact:

City of Providence
Peter Marinucci
Director of Emergency Management
272-3121, ext. 2607

R.I. Emergency Management Agency
Pam Pouge
Statewide Coordinator
e-mail: pougep@ri/arng.ngb.armymil

American Red Cross of Rhode Island
Elizabeth McDonald
Community Education Coordinator
831-7700, ext. 117
e-mail: [email protected]

©2000 American National Red Cross. All rights reserved.