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Homeowners are urged to purchase their protection ahead of potential flooding problems.

By on Apr 26, 2013 in Uncategorized |

April 26, 2013 Kevin McCarty, the commissioner for Florida, has released an official announcement that is urging homeowners in the state prepare for the upcoming hurricane season through the purchase of flood insurance before the storms start to arrive. The last few years have shown the weather to be fierce and unpredictable, so it is best to be prepared. Flood insurance coverage is available to business owners, homeowners, and renters through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to communities that are participating in it. According to Commissioner McCarty’s statement, it is important for consumers to know that rates for both new and renewed policies will rise considerably beginning on October 1, 2013. This gives another reason for purchases to be made sooner rather than later. Flood insurance is often the only protection that a resident or business has against damage from these events. In the United States, the most common natural disaster is from flooding. However, damage from that peril is not covered by the typical business, homeowners, or even tenants policy. An additional amount of flood insurance protection in necessary to make sure that the cost associated with the damages is covered. McCarty explained that “Florida’s risk for severe weather is well-known and, even though a hurricane has not impacted our state in recent years, several tropical storms have caused significant flood damage to many Floridians.” He went on to say that regardless of the type of storm that may bring about the damage, “I strongly urge” the people in the state to buy their flood insurance policies ahead of May 1. The reason is that it usually takes thirty days for a typical policy to become effective. This would mean that in order to have the coverage in place by June 1, it would need to be purchased a month ahead of time. June 1 is an important date as it marks the beginning of the hurricane season, which is the time in which it is most likely that flood insurance will be necessary to protect against flooding from severe...

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FEMA removes 1,556 Munster properties from flood zone

By on Apr 24, 2013 in Uncategorized |

April 24, 2013 A spirit of municipal cooperation between Munster and Hammond provided the energy needed to remove 1,556 primarily Munster residential properties from the Little Calumet River flood zone on March 1. Removal from a Special Flood Hazard Area reduces the cost of flood insurance premiums for business and residential property owners, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Any flood zone property with a mortgage is required to have flood insurance by the mortgage holder. FEMA governs which geographical areas are in the flood plain. The Flood Insurance and Mitigation Administration is a component of FEMA and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. The official report from FEMA indicated that the 90-day comment or appeal period that began Oct. 4, 2012 expired with no valid requests for changes to the modified flood hazard information. The 1,556 Munster properties are located along the Little Calumet River starting where Hart Ditch flows into the river, east of the Northcote Bridge, and ending about a half mile before Hohman Avenue. Hammond properties in this same section were also removed March 1. “This is part of the joint application (for a Letter of Map Revision, or LOMR) we did with the city of Hammond to remove properties along the Little Calumet River from the flood plain,” Town Manager Tom DeGiulio told the Town Council earlier this year. “This doesn’t go all the way to the state line.” There were five properties on Hohman Avenue and along Hart Ditch that were still in the flood hazard zone that required additional analysis, he said. Five houses in that same area were originally not removed. “Five still remain in the SFHA because of interior drainage issues,” said Slavash Beik, of Christopher Burke Engineering LLC, in a summary sheet to Munster officials earlier this year. However, on Feb. 3, the Munster Town Council voted to spend up to $10,000 for on-call engineering services and documentation from Christopher Burke to FEMA aimed at removing those last five homes from the flood hazard zone protected by the levee system. “FEMA needs more data, including surveying work for elevation, on those last five,” Town Engineer James Mandon told the council in February. “It’s unlikely the whole $10,000 will...

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Waterloo flood plain maps could be revised for the better

By on Apr 23, 2013 in Uncategorized |

April 23, 2013 Hundreds of Waterloo homes and businesses could be taken out of the flood plain. Two years ago, FEMA added more than 300 properties along Waterloo’s underground Dry Run Creek to the flood map, requiring them to purchase flood insurance. Homes and businesses in the affected area along West 5th Street were frustrated because that part of town has never flooded, not even during record river levels in 2008. The city of Waterloo’s spent the past two years fighting FEMA over the flood plain changes, and a new engineering study shows many of those properties should not be on the flood map. “We don’t want to get folks’ hopes up that they can drop their flood insurance right away, but we are working on trying to get to that point so that those who can get out of it will be able to,” said city of Waterloo associate engineer Jamie Knutson. The final paperwork with the new study’s results are being sent to FEMA.  It could take anywhere from six months to a year to get the flood maps changed, removing properties from the flood...

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Richland Parish, LA Flood Maps Become Final

By on Apr 16, 2013 in Uncategorized |

April 16, 2013 In five months, on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013, new flood maps for Richland Parish, Louisiana will become effective.  Before that date, state, local and federal officials are encouraging everyone to view the maps to understand their flood risk and consider purchasing flood insurance. Most property insurance policies do not cover the effects of a flood. Floods can place people at risk of uninsured loss to their businesses, homes and personal property if they don’t have either a private flood insurance policy or coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a voluntary protection program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Flooding is the #1 natural disaster in the United States and only flood insurance covers these unexpected, damaging and sometimes fatal events. “Where there is rain, there could be flooding,” said FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Robinson. “Everyone lives in a flood zone. To learn if your community participates in the NFIP and to review the new flood maps, residents can contact their local floodplain administrator. FEMA map specialists and flood insurance experts also are available to answer questions. They can be reached by phone and online chat: To use the live chat service, visit  Click on the “Live Chat” icon. To contact a FEMA Map Specialist, call 1-877-FEMA MAP (1-877-336-2627) or send an email to FEMA encourages communities not currently participating in the NFIP to look at the benefits of joining the program. Participation in the NFIP can assure a faster recovery in the event of a devastating flood. Contacting a local insurance agent is the first step to obtaining information about insurance. Folks can visit or call 1-888-379-9531 to locate an agent in their...

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FEMA, lenders wrongly charge Oregon homeowners flood insurance

By on Apr 6, 2013 in Uncategorized |

Hundreds of Oregon homeowners every year are wrongly told they need costly flood insurance, caught in a system that the state’s National Flood Insurance Program coordinator says lacks oversight and should be fixed. And the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which oversees floodplain mapping, isn’t doing much to quell a rising tide of disgruntled homeowners, including those in Oregon. Read more...

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