If a flood is expected, and you have time before it arrives, there are a number of things you can do to keep your property and belongings safe.

What to expect

Floodwaters are very dangerous and can threaten your home and community.

While floodwater can sometimes take time to reach you, if flash flooding occurs then it happens very quickly and can take you by surprise.

You should expect floodwater to be deep, have strong currents and sharp objects that can injure or trap you. Floodwaters can also contain toxic waste, chemicals and dangerous animals.

When a warning for a flood has been issued
Secure your home and property

Leaving early for a safer place

If a flood is threatening your home or property you should relocate to a safer place, if it is safe to do so.

Leaving at the last minute is very dangerous because your planned route may be blocked by fast flowing water.

When relocating:

Travelling during or after a flood

One in three flood-related fatalities in WA involves a vehicle.

Know the risks of driving through floodwater

Driving on roads during or after a flood is extremely dangerous.  

Roads and bridges can be severely damaged by the power of floodwaters. People have been seriously injured from debris, drowned after being trapped in their vehicle or washed away in fast flowing water.

If you think your car is strong enough to make it through the floodwater, think again.

Floodwaters can take control of a 4WD in just 30cm of flowing water. For smaller cars, it is only 15cm. That’s the size of an average pen!  Find out more about your vehicles ‘float point’.  

You can easily avoid these dangers.

When you see floodwaters, STOP

If a road is closed, it means closed. Always obey road closures and check road conditions if there are no signs around.

Travelling during or after a flood


Rising floodwaters can stall your car and disable electric windows or locks, potentially trapping you in your vehicle.


Animals that may pose a threat could be hidden under the water, including snakes and in some areas crocodiles.


A small 4WD can float in just 30cm of water, which is about the size of your steering wheel.


A seemingly calm surface can mask a fast-moving body of water below, powerful enough to float your vehicle.


Rubbish, rocks, tree branches, and many other sharp objects can hide under a smooth surface.


Floodwaters often contain sewage and bacteria! These harmful contaminants can cause serious illness or death.

Remember: It’s OK to drive away

Did you know? Nine out of 10 floodwater deaths on WA roads involves a local resident. No matter how well you know the roads, if a road is flooded forget it.

Travelling through areas impacted by floods
Using a boat in a flood

Staying at home during a flood

If you choose to shelter in your home, it is very important that you first know the risks, understand what you may experience and follow these steps:

  • Ensure you have secured your home and property.
  • Make sure you have an emergency kit.
  • Relocate household members to the highest safe place.
  • Inform family, friends and authorities where you are staying.
  • Plan to manage without electricity, water, gas and other essential services.
  • Stay informed for official advice via radio or other working telecommunications.

In life threatening situations

Even if you have planned well, life threatening situations can still happen. Your shelter could be damaged, or someone could become ill or injured. For life threatening emergencies call 000.

Emergency responders will try to come to your aid. However, there may be delays due to the dangerous conditions.

Wait for the cancellation

Once the flood risk has passed and the warning has been cancelled, you can leave your shelter, but you must do so with caution and follow all of the safety advice in the alert.

Your property may be damaged and unsafe. Call the State Emergency Service on 132 500 for assistance.

Only return home when authorities tell you it’s safe. If you’re returning to your home, follow the routes recommended.

Stay informed

DFES will provide flood warning updates as the information changes.

Always have your battery powered radio with you and listen for emergency broadcasts on local ABC Radio.

More Information

Recovering from a flood

Find out what to expect after a flood and what action you can take to recover.

Learn more

Flood overview

Know the risks and understand the importance of preparing for a flood and the steps to take to avoid injury or death.

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Prepare for a flood

Find out about preparing your flood plan and steps you can take to reduce the impact and damage from floodwaters.

Learn more