The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation(DCR), along with agencies such as the National Weather Service, has scheduled this week as Flood Awareness Week. For more information about Flood Awareness Week events and resources, visit www.dcr.virginia.gov/floodawarenessweek. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter(@CommEmerg) to stay updated throughout the week.
Know your Risk
It floods almost every day of the year somewhere in the United States. 90%of all presidential declarations of emergency and major disasters involve flooding, yet most Virginian’s aren’t prepared for a flood. Figuring out your risk is as easy as typing in your address into the Virginia Flood Risk Information System
Knowing your flood risk is the best way to prepare for flooding. Find out which flooding hazards impact Virginia through clicking on Virginia in www.floodsafety.noaa.gov/map.shtml. If you live in a coastal area, you can stay updated on flooding through the Federal Emergency Management Agency(FEMA) . Sign up for alerts
Get Flood Insurance
According to the National Flood Insurance Program, 1 inch of flooding can cause more than $25,000 in damages to a home. Not many Virginians can afford this cost. Homeowners and renters insurance policies typically do not cover flood damage. It’s important to plan ahead because it takes 30 days for flood insurance policies to go into effect. Buy flood insurance now, so that your property is covered. Contact an insurance agent or visit FloodSmart.gov to look at options.
Prepare and Be Safe
On average, flood damages throughout the nation annually exceed $3 billion. From 1996 to 2016, flood insurance claims in Virginia totaled more than $515 million. It causes more damage in the United States than any other weather related event. The direct and indirect costs of flood recovery affect all American taxpayers, not just flood victims. Being prepared and knowing how to stay safe will help you, your family, and your friends survive a flood.
Mitigation is the effort to reduce the loss of and property by decreasing the impact of floods and other natural disasters. Flooding can happen at any time and any place. To learn about ways to protect your family’s property, visit FEMA’s Best Practices Portfolio at https://www.fema.gov/mitigation-best-practices-portfolio.
In order to have effective mitigation, everyone needs to understand local risks, be willing to address hard choices, and invest in the long term well -being of our community. Without mitigation actions, we jeopardize our safety, financial security, and self-reliance. If you’re not prepared, the consequences can be fatal and costly.