One of the greatest wordsmiths of our time was Cassius Clay (a.k.a. Muhammad Ali). God rest his soul. He was not only known for being one of the greatest and most significant sporting figures in history, he was also known for his powerful words, crafted to unsettle his rivals. “Float Like a Butterfly…Sting Like a Bee.” This is, of course, one of his most famous quotes. There’s something about poetic quips that stick with us. Perhaps the heavens were already aware and preparing to accept his spirit. Tears from heaven, raining like mad, day after day. There has been an overwhelming amount of flooding and deaths due to drowning in these torrential downpours. One poetic quip that has become renowned to remind drivers to never attempt to drive through heavy floodwaters is “Turn Around and Don’t Drown.”
According to the National Weather Service, half of all flood-related drownings occur when cars are driven into hazardous flood waters. People underestimate the power of fast moving water. And, with the law of gravity, water will be level, where the road beneath might actually dip or have a missing segment of roadway (floodwaters typically weaken roadbeds) or there may even be a missing bridge, making depth undeterminable. Many cars are swept downstream in floodwaters. Apparently, people continue to drive around barriers as well. It is said that a mere six inches of fast moving flood water can knock over an adult if you exit the vehicle. And it takes just twelve inches of rushing water to carry away a small car. Two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles. No matter the weight, cars are made to be buoyant. This just makes sense, if you think about it, because an aircraft carrier floats.
If a car stalls in a flash flood situation, it would be wise to get out of the car and get to higher ground because that water will keep rising at a rapid rate. You don’t want to be stuck in that car when it is swept away.
So, just be safe out there. “Float Like a Butterfly…Sting Like a Bee.” Rest in Peace, Muhammad Ali.
Until next week…
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Turn Around and Don’t Drown – Comedy Defensive Driving