Prevent Snow Related Flooding

Feb. 11, 2010
OPA 041/10

News Highlights  

  • Clear areas around roof downspouts and drains.
  • When possible, move snow away from storm drains.
  • Fairfax County Emergency Information Line - 703-817-7771, TTY 711

More Information 

There are several steps Fairfax County residents and businesses can take as precautions against potential flooding related to the recent snowstorms. In the event that flooding does occur, be prepared with flood safety tips.

Recommendations from the Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services include:

  • Remove snow and debris, such as trash, from the outside openings of storm drains. Do not attempt to enter a storm drain to remove debris.
  • Clear areas around downspouts and roof drains so melting water has a path to flow away from buildings when the snow begins to melt. Do not attempt to access roofs to clear the snow due to the safety concerns of slipping off the roof and exposure to electrical wires. Snow and roof safety information. More snow and roof safety information.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency also suggests:

  • Move snow on the ground away from the house. Water from snow may cause a wet basement if allowed to run down along the basement wall. If the ground is sloped one inch per foot near the house, moving the snow just three to five feet from the house will reduce problems.
  • Examine and clean sump pumps. Test by pouring water into the pit. Make sure the discharge hose carries the water several feet away from the house to a well-drained area. Also make sure that the pipe is on sloped ground so it drains to prevent it from freezing.

Emergency information and status updates will be available on:

Additional winter weather preparedness information can be found online


Get News. Get Information. Get Fairfax County.Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director, Office of Public Affairs
703-324-3189, TTY 711, Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
To request this information in an alternate format, call 703-324-3187, TTY 711

Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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