Protect Yourself From Springtime Flooding With Flood Insurance
March 14, 2014
Flooding is the number one natural disaster in the United States. Excessive rainfall in spring is a particular threat to many areas across the country, and cresting rivers, backed up storm drains and saturated ground heighten the threat.Flood
The main threats from excessive rainfall are flash floods, mudflows and failing levees and dams.
A flash flood is rapid flooding of low-lying areas caused by excessive rainfall. Flash floods are the number one weather-related killer in the U.S. They can roll boulders, tear out trees, move cars and destroy buildings and bridges in minutes and without warning.
Mudflows are rivers of liquid and flowing mud on the surface of normally dry land, often caused by a combination of brush loss and subsequent heavy rains. Mudflows develop when water saturates the ground, such as from rapid snowmelt or heavy or long periods of rainfall, causing a thick, downhill flow of earth. Mudflows are covered by flood insurance (landslides or slope failures are not).
Failing Levees and Dams
Levees protect residents from certain levels of flooding, but over time levees can deteriorate and fail. In addition, levees can be overtopped during heavy rains. Dams can also be breached with little warning, resulting in catastrophic flooding.
Get Ready, and Get Covered
You should always be prepared for the potential for flooding in springtime and all year round. Before you are faced with an imminent threat of flooding, you should:
• Make An Emergency Kit, Plan Evacuation Routes, And Keep Important Papers In A Safe, Waterproof Place.
• Prepare A Home Inventory, Including Pictures Of Your Possessions.
• Review Your Current Insurance Policy, Become Familiar With What Is Covered And Make Sure Your • Policy Limits Adequately Protect Your Home And Its Contents.
• Purchase A Flood Insurance Policy If You Do Not Have One.
Your homeowners insurance does not cover damage caused by floods, but almost everyone can qualify for flood insurance. Flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) can be purchased through Watkins Insurance Group. It covers physical damage to your property and possessions caused by floods.
Flood insurance premiums vary depending on the coverage you need and the flood risk of your property. The NFIP uses flood maps to help communities and properties understand their flood risks. High-risk areas are those with at least a 1 in 4 chance of flooding during a 30-year mortgage. All home and business owners with federally backed mortgages in high-risk areas must buy flood insurance.
You might think you are in the clear if you live in a moderate- to low-risk area, but in reality, those in moderate- to low-risk areas make 20% of all NFIP claims. Regardless of your flood risk you should at least consider the option of buying flood insurance. Remember, just a few inches of water can cause major damage and cost you thousands of dollars in repairs.
Would you like to learn more about flood insurance? We can help!