A recent study done at the University of Waterloo analyzed the effects of flooding on people. Flooding is usually weighted by damages in dollars and the number of people displaced. What is often overlooked is mental stress, lost time from work, and priceless sentimental items.
The study took place in Burlington, which was subjected to major flooding in Aug. 2014, when 3,500 houses were flooded. The study went door-to-door speaking to people who were affected. Blair Feltmate, the head of the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation at UW, said the results were surprising. “Probably first and foremost the factor that I noticed was the fact that even three years after a flood, people rank themselves as highly stressed every time it rains,” Feltmate said.
He shared stories of many people who would still check the basement for flooding during a storm, even in the middle of the night. The study also found that the average amount of time lost from work was just over a week. While missed time is often covered by an insurance claim, many business owners felt lasting effects that were not accounted for. Cleared, effective eaves troughs and working sump-pumps are two factors to help reduce the risk of a home flooding.