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FEMA flood maps ready for viewing

By Staff | Sep 5, 2019

Lee County residents will get a chance to get a first look at the new preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps at three upcoming public open houses.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, residents and property owners can attend these open houses to see the maps, that show the potential extent and risks of flooding. They will be used to determine flood insurance premiums and building requirements.

An open house will be held at the Cape Coral Yacht Club, 5819 Driftwood Pkwy. on Tuesday from 5 to 8 p.m.

There will be another open house Tuesday at the Sanibel Community House, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and one on Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Florida Southwestern State College

At the open houses, attendees can learn about their risk of flooding and ask questions about what the new maps will mean for their property. Specialists and subject matter experts will be on hand to meet one-on-one and discuss flood risk, flood insurance, appeals, mitigation options, as well as the engineering behind the flood insurance study.

The preliminary FIRMs were developed through a partnership between the communities and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. They are based on updated modeling data and show coastal flood hazards more accurately than previous maps.

The goal of the open houses is to inform property owners and the community of their flood risks. Over time, these risks change due to construction and development, environmental changes, watershed conditions, and other factors. Flood maps are updated periodically to reflect these changes.

By law, federally regulated or insured mortgage lenders require flood insurance on buildings that are located in areas at high risk of flooding. Standard homeowners, business owners, and renters’ insurance policies typically don’t cover flood damage.

Call the National Flood Insurance Program Help Center at 800-427-4661 or visit www.floodsmart.gov for more information.