Flood Insurance Blog

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Flood Map: What is It?

By | Uncategorized

In August 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue. He never would have been able to navigate that blue ocean and its hidden dangers, shifting tides, and deadly currents, without a map. The same theory applies to flood waters, whose risks can be charted by modern flood maps. These maps keep communities abreast of local flood possibilities. Here is some information about flood maps and how they can keep your head above water:

WHAT ARE FLOOD MAPS?

Flooding is the United States’ primary natural disaster. Hurricane Florence characterized the utter devastation that flooding can cause. However, even a few inches of water can ruin your home and its contents. (A six-inch-deep creek can explode into 10 feet of raging river in only one hour.) Flood insurance rate maps (FIRMs), created by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), inform your community about the region’s potential flood risks.

WHO USES FLOOD MAPS?

Flood maps are used by a wide variety of people and organizations. Private Citizens, realtors, and insurance agents use them to locate properties in flood insurance danger zones. Community leaders use them to enforce flood management stipulations and intercept flood damage. Federal agencies and lenders use them to decide whether or not flood insurance is necessary for loans, grants, and building construction.

DO FLOOD MAPS AFFECT INSURANCE?

Yes. A flood map determines the cost of insurance so that homeowners can financially gird themselves against costs incurred by flooding. If your degree of risk is low, your insurance premiums will also be low. Flood insurance may be mandatory in high-risk areas. Neptune Flood will use our cutting-edge fusion of technology and insurance expertise to guide you through the complexities of flood insurance selection.

DO THEY MAP REAL FLOODS?

No. They are maps of hypothetical floods, which help residents understand the areas that may be particularly susceptible to flooding.

WHAT TECHNOLOGIES ARE USED TO CREATE FLOOD MAPS?

• LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) — LIDAR simulates flow for the entire floodplain in two dimensions. This technology provides an accurate representation of where water will travel during a flood.

• TRIMR2D Computer Model — This computer program is called a flow model because it solves equations that detail the physics of fluid flow. TRIMR2D can compute equations for large areas, as well as ones that have fast flow shifts.

• Geographic Information System (GIS) — GIS is a cutting-edge technology that can be thought of as computer cartography. It pinpoints areas that are likely to be flooded, when the flood will occur, the potential water depth, and when the flood waters will peak.

WHAT TYPES OF FLOOD MAPS ARE THERE?

• Online — These are the most user-friendly flood maps. Simply go to FEMA’s digital service center, and type in your entire address. Their system will generate a highly detailed topographical on-screen flood map, along with a precise legend regarding your area’s flood risk.

• Paper — Paper flood maps specific to your community can be obtained at your local government’s zoning or planning office. One type of paper flood map is called a flat map, with multiple panels that you must assemble yourself. The other type is a one-piece Z-fold map, which resembles a folding road map.

CAN FLOODS BE PREDICTED?

They can, but not via flood maps. Prediction requires the following:

• Assessment of the amount of water falling, in real time.

• Observing the changes in the river’s height, in real time. This can foreshadow the potency of the danger and when it will hit a certain region.

• Ascertaining the storm’s duration, size and intensity. This can help predict the fierceness of a potential flood.

• Cognizance of such things as soil-moisture, ground temperature, snowpack and vegetation in forecasting a flood’s destructiveness.

WHAT TYPES OF FLOODS ARE THERE?

There are two types of floods: river floods and flash floods. As their name implies, flash floods cause greater loss of life because they leave their victims with little or no time to prepare or escape. River floods, on the other hand, typically cause more property loss because lives are spared but belongings are not. Most floods are caused by some sort of storm.

• Flash flood — This type of flood occurs when a storm’s runoff causes water height to swiftly rise. Flash floods typically happen in areas without enough soil or vegetation to obstruct the water.

• River flood — River flooding is triggered when runoff from severe rainstorms cause waters to slowly rise over a large area. They can also be caused by high tides or ice jams.

Flood maps are an excellent tool for increasing awareness of potential flood danger. They’re not perfect, though. Twenty-five percent of all flood claims are located outside of the “high risk” zones. At Neptune Flood of Pinellas Park, Florida, we offer affordable flood coverage that innovatively merges technology, math algorithms and insurance expertise. Please contact us to discuss how we can waterproof your life.

 

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Flood Insurance Misconceptions

By | Flood Info

There are several misconceptions when it comes to flood insurance. With the threat of hurricanes as well as flooding, Neptune Flood wants you to be aware of these common misconceptions when it comes to insuring your home and its contents. Costly flooding can happen even without a hurricane, so it is best to be educated first.

You don’t want to make the mistake of not having enough insurance if your home is flooded, regardless of the reason. Being educated as well as being prepared for flooding can save you time, money, and frustration in the long run.

Misconception #1: Flood damage is covered by homeowners’ insurance.
Correct fact: Covered in a regular home insurance policy is damage from water leakage, a hole in the roof or a leaking pipe. Flood damage is NOT covered. The difference is that flood water is “rising water” and is not considered the same as what is covered under water damage. You need to have separate flood insurance to ensure that your home and its contents are protected in the event of flooding from storm surge or even rainfall that is torrential; separate insurance covers the home and contents in the event of flooding.

Misconception #2: The NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program) is the only place to buy insurance against flooding.
Correct fact: Private carriers can insure you as well. Neptune Flood is a private carrier who can offer a certified flood endorsement to ensure that everything is covered. Such things as mold damage, swimming pools, hot tubs, and temporary housing are not covered by the NFIP.

Misconception #3: Only those who live in a flood zone need high-risk flood coverage.
Correct fact: The actual fact is that flooding happens in all 50 states and is the most common type of natural disaster. Everyone across the country should be aware of flooding. In fact, one-third of disaster relief from floods goes to residents outside of high-risk flood zones. The FEMA website lists those in high-risk areas; however outside of those areas, as mentioned by FloodSmart, you may need to have additional insurance for flooding. Remember that it takes only an inch of water from flooding to incur thousands of dollars in damage. View the chart to see where there have been claims for flooding in the United States. You will learn that spring and fall storms, as well as torrential rains in the middle of the country, have caused major problems. Both Georgia and Tennessee have experienced this type of rain.

Misconception#4: Only storms cause floods.
Correct fact: Flooding can be caused by dams breaking as well as a difference in water flow above ground and below it. One example is flooding from snow melting.

According to FEMA, no home is completely safe from potential devastation from flooding. Even if your home is not in a high-risk flooding area, your mortgage lender may require that you have it.

Final Thoughts on Insurance for Flooding
That special shed that you built in the back of your house may not be covered by NFIP. Coverage can include this and any other unattached buildings. Your temporary living expenses are important if your home is flooded; that itself is a good reason to have coverage for this added expense.

At Neptune Flood, we want you to be prepared, with more of your assets covered in a policy that might include replacement cost, temporary living expense, basement contents, pool repair/refill, and detached structures. Higher limits of coverage can be included in your policy. With only a ten day waiting period, as opposed to 30 days under NFIP, it makes sense to investigate this insurance option. Our technology could save you some serious money, so it pays to look into our coverage for your home and surroundings if flooding occurs.

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Flood Water Health Risks

By | Flood Info

After a hurricane or flood has passed, you may be vulnerable to health risks from the flood waters. At Neptune Flood, we want you to be aware of what may be in the water that you are walking in, as well as drink. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), standing water poses a variety of threats to health which you know about.

Stomach Distress

If you eat or drink anything that has been contaminated by the water caused by flooding, you are vulnerable to diarrhea. Protection against such unwanted microbes includes:

  • Wash hands after coming in contact with flood water.
  • Do not let kids play in the water from flooding.
  • Wash kids’ hands frequently.
  • Toys that have been contaminated by the waters should not be played with until they are disinfected.

Wound Risks

Open wounds that have come in contact with the waters can become infected. You can protect yourself and your family by following these steps:

  • If you have an open wound, avoid exposure to the waters.
  • A clean and open wound should be covered with a waterproof bandage.
  • Wash wounds with soap and clean water to keep them as clean as possible.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if a wound is red, has swelling or is draining.

Other Health Effects

When the feet are wet or have been in the water for long periods of time, Trench Foot or Immersion Foot can develop. Although it is painful, this condition can be treated and, even better, prevented. Tingling, itching, pain, swelling, blotchiness, and cold skin may be symptoms.
To protect yourself, you should:

  • Dry and clean feet thoroughly.
  • Wear clean and dry socks.
  • Soak affected feet in warm water, between 102° to 110° F for five minutes.
  • Do not wear socks when sleeping.
  • Obtain medical attention promptly.

Having a wound as well may increase the possibility of infection. Check your feet daily for symptoms that are becoming worse.

Hazards From Chemicals

Because flood waters may have moved containers of chemicals or solvents from their usual storage areas, you should be aware of potential hazards.

Drowning

Water after flooding contains potential drowning risks for everyone, even the best of swimmers. Moving swiftly, water can also be deadly. Standing water that is shallow can also be a dangerous hazard for small children.

Vehicles can be swept away and do not provide protection from flooded waters; they can also easily stall out.

Electrical Hazards

Downed wires can be dangerous and should be avoided. Additionally, power should be turned off if water has been near electrical circuits and equipment. Do not turn it back on until electrical equipment and circuits have been inspected by a qualified electrician.

Follow any included directions for a portable generator for safety.

Insect Wounds and Animal Bites

The waters may contain animals, insects, and reptiles that have been displaced. Walking through water, you should be alert and, if possible, avoid contact. More information for dealing with bites from animals and insects can be found here.

Preventing Wounds

Since flooding waters can contain sharp objects or metal and glass fragments, care should be taken to avoid any objects that can cause a wound that might lead to infection.

Drinking Water

Water may not be safe for drinking. Before the disaster, you should have bottled water on hand as an emergency supply. Water with germs can sometimes be made safe to drink through boiling and disinfecting. However, if the water has been exposed to hazardous chemicals, it will still not be safe to drink.

These are some of the hazards and risks to think about after the advent of flooding. Before the flooding occurs, you should think about adequate insurance to replace items that may have been damaged or lost. Neptune Flood is here to help you with insurance that is backed by Lloyds, one of the largest insurance markets in the world. Maps and technology will help you find the right insurance for your area. With knowledge of avoiding risks and insurance from Neptune Flood, you can be prepared if any flooding does happen.

FEMA, Neptune Flood, flood insurance

FEMA: What is it?

By | Flood Info

What Exactly is FEMA?

People often ask, just what is FEMA? The term stands for Federal Emergency Management Association. We at Neptune Flood Insurance want to help you understand what this government agency is and how they are involved in emergencies, such as hurricanes or flooding.

History

The first response by Congress to known emergency legislation began in the year 1803, as the government extended the time for the remittance of payment for tariffs to merchants. This was after a devastating series of fires that affected the city of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Considered by many as the first piece of Congressional legislation to provide disaster relief, other efforts were made after that time.

The present agency began with two presidential orders in the year 1978. Its main purpose is the coordination of response to a United States disaster after it has occurred. These disasters often overwhelm state and local resources and help from the United States government is needed.

State governments, through the order of the governor, must declare a state of emergency as well as ask the president that a federal response is given. On-the-ground disaster recovery support is a major part of FEMA’s work; the agency also provides knowledgeable experts in specialized fields as well as funding for the rebuilding efforts to state and local governments. Offering access to low-interest loans, the organization works with the Small Business Administration.

Additionally, funds are given for the training of personnel for preparedness throughout the United States.

After a Flood

FEMA was placed under the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, after the attacks on September 11, 2001.

After the devastating floods from Hurricane Katrina in 2005, it became evident that the government was not giving as much attention to natural disasters, as testified by emergency management professionals. At that point, they felt that the nation needed preparedness and was more vulnerable to such natural events as hurricanes.

Even with calls to separate the agency, today the Federal Emergency Management Agency is a very large agency and still a part of the Department of Homeland Security.

What Assistance is Provided for Floods?

FEMA grants may be provided to those who suffer severe damage to homes, vehicles or personal property from flooding. Assistance after the disaster may include grants to help pay for emergency home repairs and temporary housing as well as for uninsured and under-insured personal property losses. Disaster-related medical, dental and funeral expenses, as well as other serious disaster-related expenses, may also be eligible for assistance.

The National Flood Insurance Program

Helping to reduce the impact of flooding on public and private homes and businesses, this Federal Emergency Management Agency program offers affordable insurance. It prompts property owners, renters, and businesses by encouraging communities to adopt and enforce floodplain management regulations.

Effects of flooding are mitigated on newer structure, and the economic and social impacts of a flood are lessened through the promotion of affordable insurance for flooding damage.

At Neptune Flood, we can answer your questions regarding the insurance you may need to be fully prepared for an emergency. Because our nerds work tirelessly to provide solutions, you don’t have to. We are backed by Lloyds, one of the largest insurers in the world, and have great products to make the purchase of insurance simple and easy.

Millions of Americans are now saving up to 25% off the cost of their insurance, due to the use of technology. Using satellites and LiDAR and IfSAR (light detection and remote sensing radar) technology, Neptune Flood creates maps to help with the identification of the true cost of buying insurance. Get a quote or browse our site to learn more about how you can be prepared.

 

 

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Hurricane Preparation Before the Storm

By | Flood Info

You’ve heard the weather reports, checked out the National Weather Service and know that a hurricane is heading your way. At this point, hopefully, you have flooding insurance in place and do not have to think about that. Neptune flood wants to make sure that you know how to get ready when a hurricane threatens, so here are some tips to help you prepare. These suggestions have been listed according to a time frame.

Prepare
What you can do now:

  • Know your area’s risk
  • Sign up for a community warning system
  • Watch for heavy rain, if you are at risk for flash floods
  • Think about your plans for sheltering in place or evacuation
  • Know evacuation routes, evacuation zones and the location of shelters
  • Gather supplies, medications and pet needs
  • Safeguard important papers or place them in a password-protected digital place
  • Protect your property. Clean drains and gutters and install check valves in plumbing. If you have hurricane shutters be prepared to use them
  • Review your insurance policies in case of damage or flood

36 Hours Ahead
According to the government, 36 hours ahead of the hurricane you should:

  • Be ready to get the latest updates; turn on TV or radio
  • Restock your emergency kit
  • Plan how to communicate with family if power fails
  • Review evacuation routes, evacuation zones and the location of shelters
  • Keep your car in good working order and fill up with gas
  • Put emergency supplies in the car as well as a change of clothes

18 to 36 Hours Ahead

  • Bookmark the list of county resources so it is handy
  • Bring in outdoor furniture and anything that could fly and hit something in high wind
  • Anchor objects such as propane tanks
  • Trim trees that are close to the house
  • Activate storm shutters or put 5/8” exterior-grade or marine plywood on windows

6 to 18 Hours Ahead

  • Turn on TV and radio for instructions
  • Charge your cell phone in case of power loss

6 Hours Ahead

  • If not recommended or ordered to evacuate, plan on staying put and not going out. Let friends know where you are
  • Close storm shutters; stay away from the windows
  • Turn refrigerator to coldest setting in case of power loss. Before eating food when power is restored, check the food temperature
  • Turn on TV or radio or check the website in your county every 30 minutes in order to get updates

If you are given an evacuation order, do it immediately. Remember to not drive around any barricades, as there could be flooding.

These steps, as well as the purchasing of flooding insurance, can make the event of a hurricane less stressful. By preparing months ahead of time as well as hours before, it will be less chaotic, and fewer things will be forgotten or neglected. We have additional information on the Neptune Flood blog on flood preparedness. Because a hurricane also involves high winds, additional precautions should be taken.

Consult a document given out by your county to find out about which evacuation zone you live in, so you know ahead of time whether you might have to leave. If you are going to stay. If you have a pet, know where the nearest pet-friendly shelter is if you do have to evacuate.

Using space-age technology, Neptune Flood can help you be prepared for a hurricane or flood. With the ability to buy flooding insurance in less than three minutes, why not be ready.