Homeowners Warned of Flood Damage Risks

May 17, 2011

As floodwaters recede in western Kentucky, homeowners are reminded that furnaces, water heaters, electric panels and liquefied petroleum gas tanks that have been underwater may need to be inspected after repairs are complete.

“In an effort to prevent damage from accidental fire, homeowners whose electric service was shut off due to flooding need to be aware of the process to restore power and to make sure that their home is safe to occupy,” Jerry Lunsford, commissioner of the Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction, said in a press release.

State law requires that LPG tanks supplying more than 125 gallons of products for nonresidential use and in need of repair will require a plan review and permit prior to reconnection. In addition, only suppliers and contractors who hold a class “A” or “E” LPG license can connect a system. Systems should also be pressure checked for leaks prior to restoring service.

For single-family residences, LPG systems should be inspected by a certified license holder but do not require a plan review. For questions on LPG systems, contact the Hazardous Materials Section in the Division of Fire Prevention at 502-573-1702. 

Home or business owners who suffered flooding in their residence or place of business may also need to have all electrical services checked by a licensed electrician before restoring power.

“Floodwaters can cover electrical outlets for an extended period of time and present a fire or electrical shock hazard if not properly inspected and replaced before the power is restored," Lunsford said. “If the electrical system was covered by floodwaters, it is imperative that a licensed electrician make the repairs and have the work inspected prior to power being restored to the structure.”

For a list of certified electrical inspectors, homeowners and business owners can call 502-573-1797. For a list of active electrical inspectors by county, visit http://dhbc.ky.gov/bce/ei.htm.

The Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction may be contacted at 502-573-0365 to answer questions relating to permitting, inspection and licensure requirements.