The flood hazard. Steps You. Can Take Today

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Natural & beneficial functions

of local floodplains

Floodplains perform certain natural and beneficial functions which cannot be duplicated elsewhere. In their natural state, floodplains have an important impact on flooding. Flood waters can spread over large areas in floodplains which have not been developed, thereby reducing floodwater velocities and providing flood storage to reduce peak flows down-stream. In this way, the relatively undeveloped areas of Taylor Park, East Bay Country Club and the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD) property northwest of East Bay Country Club have reduced the severity of flooding in adjacent areas.Natural flood-plains, especially in coastal areas such as Largo Narrows Park, also reduce wind and wave impacts, and undisturbed natural vegetation such as mangroves serves to stabilize soils and minimize erosion as a result of flooding.

Beyond simple flood control, undeveloped floodplains also improve water quality in areas where natural vegetation filters some of the sediment and impurities out of runoff, which might otherwise contaminate large bodies of fresh water, such as Taylor Lake, Walsingham Reservoir or Lake Seminole. Natural floodplains moderate water temperature, reducing the possibility of adverse impacts on aquatic plants and animals. They provide habitat for diverse species of plants and animals, some of which cannot live anywhere else.

Of special importance in Pinellas County and the entire Tampa Bay region,which suffers from a chronic water shortage, floodplains preserved without significant development can act as recharge areas for groundwater, helping to replenish the aquifer on which we all depend for our drinking water.

Unfortunately, most of Largo’s floodplain areas are developed and anyone who lives or owns property in a floodplain does face the risk of flood damage.

The flood hazard

Property located in a "100-year floodplain," also known as a "Special Flood Hazard Area" (SFHA) has an elevation above mean sea level which is low enough that there is a one-per-cent probability of flooding in any given year. This may sound like a remote possibility of flooding, but it is important to bear in mind that it is an average probability over the course of an entire year.

During the dry months, flooding is highly unlikely; but during the rainy season or any other period of intense rainfall, stormwater drains from other areas of the City into the floodplains. If the volume of stormwater runoff exceeds the capacity of the creeks, ditches and other drainage improvements in these areas, then surrounding properties (such as yours) are at a significantly greater risk of flooding than are properties at higher elevations.

Although Largo has never suffered a flooding disaster comparable to the Mississippi River floods of 1993 and 1995 or the Georgia/Florida Panhandle floods of July 1994, we have had heavy rainfalls that resulted in flooding in low-lying areas such as the McKay Creek and Allen’s Creek basins, and the areas surrounding the East Bay Country Club and Lake Seminole. In September 1983, 19 inches of rain fell in just four days.

Steps You

Can Take Today

Make an itemized list of

person-al property,including furnishings,

cloth-ing and valuables, and take

photo-graphs of your home, inside and out.

These will help your insurance adjuster

in settling claims and prove uninsured

losses, which are tax-deductible.

Keep your insurance policies and list

of personal property in a safe place,

such as a safe deposit box. Know the

name, phone number and location of

the agent(s) who issued your policies.

Learn the safest route from your

home or place of business to high, safe

ground or the nearest shelter, just in

case you should have to evacuate in a

hurry.

Keep a portable radio, emergency

cooking equipment and flashlights in

working order, and keep extra batteries

on hand.

If you live in a frequently flooded

area, keep on hand sandbags, plywood

and plastic sheeting to help protect

your property. Sandbags should not be

stacked directly against the outer walls

of a building, since wet bags may create

added pressure on the foundation.

C i t y o f L a r g o C o m m u n i t y D e v e l o p m e n t D e p a r t m e n t • 2 0 1 H i g h l a n d A v e n u e , L a r g o , F L 3 3 7 7 0 • 7 2 7 . 5 8 7 . 6 7 4 9

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TIP:Residential improve-ments such as paving, berms, filling and excava-tion can lead to increased glooding of adajacent land. Be sure to hve your plans reviewed and approved by the Largo Engineering Division before you build.

In September 1988, 15 inches of rain fell within a four-day period, with 8 inches falling in just 8 hours on the final day. On one weekend in June 1995, a severe storm dropped 9 inches of rain in a very short time. Heavy rainstorms, especially in the summer months, are com-mon in our area. Obviously, a hurricane or tropical storm would bring even heavier rainfall, driven by high winds and accompanied by a tidal storm surge which could delay normal drainage into Tampa Bay, the Intracoastal Waterway and the Gulf of Mexico. Even though Tropical Storm Josephine came ashore in the Big Bend area some 200 miles north of us on October 7, 1996, just the fringes of that storm caused heavy rain, severe flooding and major property damage in parts of Pinellas County.

The warning system

In the event of an approaching hurricane or other severe weather, the Pinellas County Department of Emergency Management will issue warnings over the Emergency Broadcast System via radio and television stations. If necessary, county and municipal police and fire departments will issue warnings by mobile loud-speakers or door-to-door contact. You may be advised to take certain emergency precautions, such as turning off electricity and gas, as well as other measures required during a severe flood hazard warning. You would also be advised as to evacuation routes and the locations of emergency shelters.

What to do when the

flood warning comes

The article Reducing Loss and Avoiding Injuryon pages three and four contains information compiled from FEMA and SPCA brochures and outlines precautionary measures that should be taken in advance of any emer-gency, when flooding is imminent and after water has receded. Another excellent source of information is the annual Hurricane Guidepublished by the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council, available at Largo City Hall and other locations throughout the city.

Retrofitting options for buildings

On pages seven and eight is a list of several flood protection methods for buildings. It may be feasible to use one of these methods to retrofit your property and reduce its vulnerability to flood damage. Call the City’s Building Official at 586-7488 for advice on floodproof-ing or retrofittfloodproof-ing your property. The Buildfloodproof-ing Division also maintains a voluntary registry of local contractors licensed in residential and commercial retrofitting techniques.

Development permit

requirements

All new development and structural additions and most retrofitting procedures require permits issued by the City Building Division.The 100-year flood elevation must be determined and certified by a registered surveyor or civil engineer in conjunction with all development applications for new construction or structural additions within Special Flood Hazard Areas. For nonresidential and multifamily residential development, site plan approval by the Community Development Department also is required. Any improvements (paving, berms, filling or excavation of land, retention areas, etc.) which could affect the amount, velocity, depth or direction of stormwater runoff must be reviewed and approved by the City’s Engineering Division.

After completion of any new construction or structural addition, an Elevation Certificate (standard FEMA form) must be prepared and certified by a registered surveyor or civil engineer, and submitted to the City Building Division before a Certificate of Occupancy or Certificate of Completion will be issued. Elevation Certificates are available in the Building Department for review; copies are available for a copying fee.

IMPORTANT: Development Code Subsection 6206 pro-vides that as soon as the cumulative dollar value of building additions and certain other improvements permitted after January 1, 2003 exceeds 49 percent of the fair market value of the existing structure(s) as of January 1, 2003, the original structure and all additions built after January 1, 2003 must be brought into full conformity with applicable flood protection require-ments. This could include raising all structures to the minimum flood protection elevation.

For information or to report illegal floodplain develop-ment, call the Community Development Department (587-6749), the Building Division (586-7488) or the Engineering Division (587-6713).

Drainage system maintenance

The City’s public drainage improvements (ditches, storm sewers, retention ponds, control structures, etc.) are jointly maintained by our Public Works Department and Recreation and Parks Department. Our primary objective is to keep these drainage improvements free of excess vegetation and other obstructions to maintain necessary storage capacity and free flow of stormwater and reduce the probability of flooding. Dumping of trash, yard clippings or other debris into streams, ditch-es or storm sewers can create obstructions and cause localized flooding even during moderate rainstorms. For this reason, such dumping is specifically prohibited in Sections 7-7(b), 13-6(b) and 22-106 of the Largo Code of Ordinances

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Protecting your pets

If a serious storm would require evacuation of your property, your pet will need a safe place to stay. Red Cross shelters and most other emergency facilities do not accept animals. But there are several ways in which you can plan ahead and ensure the best possible care for your pet:

• Ask friends or family living on high ground about caring for your pet, or ask your veterinarian for the loca-tion of the nearest appropriate boarding kennel, veteri-nary hospital or other pet evacuation center. (Pets under medication should be sheltered at a veterinary hospital.) There are 10 times more pets than pet board-ing spaces in Pinellas County, so use a shelter only as a last resort.

• Plan an evacuation route to the shelter now, and don’t wait until the last minute to take your pet there. Spaces normally are filled on a first-come, first-served basis, so call ahead and determine space availability.

• Before accepting your pet, most kennels, animal hospitals and shelters will require proof of vaccinations, ID collar and rabies tag, a carrier or cage large enough for your pet to stand and turn around, a leash, at least two days’ food supply and bowls, medications, special care instructions and newspapers or plastic trash bags for handling waste.

• Standard boarding fees (or hospitalization fees, if required) will be charged. SPCA and Humane Society shelters accept donations.

• If the pet shelter you select has to be evacuated,animals will be taken either to the SPCA of St. Petersburg or to the Humane Society of North Pinellas. Trucks will be available for transportation in certain areas. There will be no home pick-up of pets.

• When you bring your pet home, remember that high winds and heavy rain can change familiar scents and landmarks, making it possible for a dog or cat to be confused and become lost if allowed to roam freely. Give your pet time to get its bearings and don’t let it consume food or water that may be contaminated.

When the flood comes

Safety is the most important consideration. Since flood-waters can rise rapidly, you should be prepared to evac-uate before the water level reaches your property. Keep a battery-powered radio tuned to a local station, and follow all instructions for your area. Be prepared to evacuate.

When outside the house, remember that FLOODWATERS ARE DECEPTIVE. Six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet. Avoid flooded roads and do not walk through floodwaters.

If, and ONLY if, time permits . . .

❑Turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve if evacuation is likely. Do not touch any electrical equipment unless it is in a dry area and you are standing on a piece of dry wood while wearing rubber gloves and rubber-soled boots or shoes.

Reducing Loss

& Avoiding Injury

To report any drainage problems, or to report illegal dumping into the drainage system, please call the Engineering Division at 587-6713. If you have flooding, drainage or storm sewer problems the Public Works Department Streets and Drainage Division will help to identify the cause and find a solution. Call our Field Engineering Supervisor at 587-6718.

The National Flood

Insurance Program (NFIP)

The federal Flood Insurance Act of 1973 requires that any building which has a federal or federally-related mortgage and is located within an SFHA must carry flood insurance. Some lenders require flood insurance regardless of the type of mortgage being sought. Even

if there are no mortgages on a given property, it is nev-ertheless advisable to carry flood insurance. Standard homeowners policies do not necessarily cover losses due to flooding. IMPORTANT: As of March 1995, there is a 30-day waiting period before a federal flood insurance policy becomes effective. Don’t wait until the last minute to buy flood insurance.

For more information on the National Flood Insurance Program, call your insurance agent or the Florida Dept. of Community Affairs, Division of Emergency Management at (850) 413-9960. The Largo Library Reference Section also has a collection of publications by FEMA and by other agencies that provide consider-able information on Special Flood Hazard Areas and the National Flood Insurance Program.

TIP:Remeber to store important papers and valuables where they will be protected from water damage.

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Move valuable papers, furs, jewelry, clothing, etc.

to upper floors or higher storage areas.

Fill bathtubs, sinks and jugs with clean water in

case regular supplies are contaminated. You can sanitize these items by first rinsing them with bleach.

❑Board up windows or protect them with storm shutters.

Bring outdoor possessions (lawn furniture,

garbage cans, tools, signs, other moveable objects) inside the house or tie them down securely to pre-vent them from being blown around or swept away.

If it is safe to evacuate by car . . .

❑ Stock the car with nonperishable foods (like canned or dried food) a plastic container of water, blankets, first aid kit, flashlights, dry clothing and any special medications needed by your family.

Keep the gas tank at least half full, since gasoline

pumps will not work if electrical power is out.

Do not drive where the water is over the roads.

Parts of the road may already be washed out.

❑If your car stalls in a flooded area, abandon it as soon as possible. Floodwaters can rise rapidly and sweep a car and its occupants away. Many deaths have resulted from attempts to move stalled vehicles.

If you’re caught in your home by rising water,

move to the second floor or if necessary, to the roof. Take warm clothing,a flashlight and a portable radio with you. Then wait for help – don’t try to swim to safety. Rescue teams will be looking for you.

After the flood

If your home, apartment or business has suffered flood damage, immediately call the agent who handles your flood insurance policy.The agent will submit a flood loss form to the National Flood Insurance Program. An adjuster will be assigned to inspect your property as soon as possible.

• Before entering the building, check for structural damage. Make sure it is not in danger of collapsing. Turn off outside gas lines at the meter or tank. If you smell gas, call your utility company immediately. • When you enter, do not use an open flame as a source of light, since gas may still be trapped inside. Use a battery-powered flashlight.

• Watch for downed electrical wires. Make certain the main power switch for the structure is turned off. Do not turn on lights or appliances until an electrician has checked the system for short circuits.

• Watch for animals, especially snakes. Small ani-mals that have been flooded out of their homes may seek shelter in yours. Use a pole or stick to poke around, giving small animals a chance to leave unharmed.

• Look before you step. After a flood, the ground and floors will be covered with debris, like broken bottles and nails. Floors, walkways and stairs that have been covered with mud may be slippery. • Cover broken windows and holes in the roof or walls to prevent further weather damage.

• Proceed with immediate clean-up measures to pre-vent health hazards. Perishable items pose a health problem and should be listed and photographed before discarding. Throw out fresh food and medicines that may have come into contact with floodwaters. • Water for drinking and food preparation should be used only if the County water system has been declared safe. In an emergency, you may get drinking water by draining a hot water tank or melting ice cubes.

• Carbon monoxide exhaust kills. Use generators or other gasoline-powered equipment outdoors only. The same goes for camping stoves. Fumes from charcoal are espe-cially deadly; use charcoal grills only outdoors.

• Take photographs of the damage to your building and its contents. Refrigerators, sofas and other hard goods should be hosed off and kept for the insurance adjuster’s inspection. Any partially damaged items should be dried and aired; the adjuster will make recommendations as to repair or disposal.

• Take all wooden furniture outdoors to dry, but keep it out of direct sunlight to prevent warping. A garage or carport is a good place for drying. Remove drawers and other moving parts as soon as possible, but do not pry open swollen drawers from the front. Instead, remove the backing and push the drawers out.

• Shovel out mud while it is still moist to give walls and floors a chance to dry. Once plastered walls have dried, brush off loose dirt. Wash with household cleanser and rinse with clean water, starting at the bottom and finish-ing with the ceilfinish-ing. Pay special attention to cleanfinish-ing out heating ducts and plumbing systems.

• Remove mildew from dry wood with a solution of 1 cup liquid chlorine bleach in 1 gallon of water.

• Clean metal at once, then wipe with a kerosene-soaked cloth. A light coat of oil will prevent iron from rusting. Scour all utensils

• Quickly separate all wet clothing to avoid running col-ors. Let clothing or household fabrics dry slowly, away from direct heat, before brushing off loose dirt. If you cannot get a professional cleaner, rinse the items in lukewarm water to remove lodged soil, then wash with mild detergent, rinse and dry in sunlight.

TIP:NEVER use an open flame when enter-ing a flood-damaged home, as gas may be trapped inside.

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Facts about the NFIP

Who needs flood insurance?Everyone.

And everyone in a participating community of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) can buy flood insurance. Nationwide, more than 18,000 communities have joined the Program. In some instances, people have been told that they cannot buy flood insurance because of where they live. To clear up this and other misconceptions about federal flood insurance, the NFIP has compiled the following list of common myths about the Program, and the real facts behind them, to give you the full story about this valuable protection.

You can’t buy flood insurance if you are located in a high-risk flood area. You can buy federal flood insurance no matter where you live if your communi-ty belongs to the NFIP, except in Coastal Barrier Resources System (CBRS) areas.

The Program was created in 1968 to provide affordable flood insurance to people who live in areas with the greatest risk of flooding, called Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs). In fact, under the National Flood Insurance Act, lenders must require borrowers whose property is located within an SFHA to purchase flood insurance as a condition of receiving a Federally-backed mortgage loan. There is an exemption for conventional loans on prop-erties within CBRS areas. Lenders should notify borrow-ers that their property is located in an SFHA and that affordable Federal flood insurance is available.

You can’t buy flood insurance immediately before or during a flood. You can purchase flood coverage at any time. There is a 30-day waiting period after you’ve applied and paid the premi-um before the policy is effective, with the following exceptions:

1) If the initial purchase of flood insurance is in con-nection with the making, increasing, extending, or renewing of a loan, there is no waiting period. The cov-erage becomes effective at the time of the loan, pro-vided that application and presentment of premium is made at or prior to loan closing.

2) If the initial purchase of flood insurance is made dur-ing the one-year period followdur-ing the issuance of a revised flood map for a community, then there is a one-day waiting period. The policy does not cover a "loss in progress," defined by the NFIP as a loss occurring as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the policy term. In addition, you cannot increase the amount of insurance coverage you have during a loss in progress.

Homeowners’ insurance policies cover flooding.

Unfortunately, many homeowners find out too late that their homeowners’ poli-cies do not cover flooding. Federal flood insurance protects your most valuable assets — your home and belongings.

Flood insurance is only available for homeowners.

Flood insurance is available to protect homes, condominiums, apartments, and nonresidential buildings, including com-mercial structures. A maximum of $250,000 of building coverage is available for single-family residential build-ings; $250,000 per unit for multifamily residences. The limit for contents coverage on all residential buildings is $100,000, which is also available to renters. Commercial structures can be insured to a limit of $500,000 for the building and $500,000 for the contents.

Only residents of high-risk flood zones need to insure their property. Even if you live in a area that is not flood-prone, it’s advisable to have flood insur-ance. One-third of the NFIP’s claims come from outside high-risk flood areas. The NFIP’s Preferred Risk Policy, available for as little as $80 per year, is designed for residential properties located in low-to-moderate flood risk zones.

The NFIP does not offer any type of basement coverage.

Yes, it does. The NFIP defines a basement as any area of a building with a floor that is subgrade, or below ground level on all sides. Basement coverage under an NFIP policy includes cleanup expenses and items used to service the building, such as elevators, furnaces, water heaters, washers and dryers, air conditioners, freezers, utility connections, circuit breaker boxes, pumps, and tanks used in solar energy sys-tems.The policy does not cover the contents of a finished basement and improvements, such as finished walls, floors and ceilings.

TIP:Flood insurance is available for most struc-tures - apartments, homes, condos and commercial buildings.

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You can’t buy flood insurance if your property has been flooded.

It doesn’t matter how many times your home, apartment or business has flood-ed.You are still eligible to purchase flood insurance, provided that your community is participat-ing in the NFIP.

Federal disaster assistance will pay for flood damage.

Before a community is eligible for disas-ter assistance, it must be declared a Federal disaster area. Federal disaster assistance declarations are awarded in less than 50 percent of flooding incidents. The annual premium for an NFIP policy, averaging about $300 per year, is less expensive than interest on federal disaster loans, even though they are always granted on favor-able terms. Furthermore, if you are uninsured and receive Federal disaster assistance after a flood, you must purchase flood insurance to receive disaster relief in the future.

The NFIP encourages coastal development.

One of the NFIP’s primary objectives is to guide development away from high-risk flood areas. NFIP regulations mini-mize the impact of structures that are built in SFHAs by requiring them not to cause obstructions to the natural flow of floodwaters. Also, as a condition of community participation in the NFIP, those structures built within SFHAs must adhere to strict floodplain management regulations.

In addition, the Coastal Barrier Resources Act (CBRA) of 1982 relies on the NFIP to discourage building in the fragile coastal areas covered by CBRA by prohibiting the sale of flood insurance in designated CBRA areas. These laws do not prohibit property owners from building along coastal areas, but they do transfer the financial risk of such building from federal taxpayers to those who choose to live or invest in these areas.

Federal flood insurance can only be purchased through the NFIP directly. Federal flood insurance is sold and serv-iced directly through the NFIP or through a Write Your Own (WYO) company. WYO com-panies write and service policies on a nonrisk-bearing basis through a special arrangement with the Federal Insurance Administration.

The NFIP does not cover flooding resulting from hurricanes or the over-flow of rivers or tidal waters.

The NFIP defines covered flooding as a general and temporary condition dur-ing which the surface of normally dry land is partially or completely inundated. Two adjacent properties or two or more acres must be affected.

Flooding can be caused by:

• The overflow of inland or tidal waters

• The unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source,such as heavy rainfall • The incidence of mudslides or mudflows, caused by flooding, which are comparable to a river of liquid and flowing mud

• The collapse or destabilization of land along the shore of a lake or other body of water, resulting from erosion or the effect of waves, or water cur-rents exceeding normal cyclical levels.

Wind-driven rain is considered flooding. No, it isn’t. Rain entering through wind-damaged windows, doors or a hole in a wall or roof, resulting in standing water or puddles, is considered windstorm rather than flood damage.

Federal flood insurance only covers damage caused by the general condition of flooding (defined above), typically caused by storm surge, wave wash, tidal waves or the overflow of any body of water above normal cyclical levels. Buildings that sustain this type of damage usually have a watermark, showing how high the water has risen before it subsides. Although the Standard Flood Insurance Policy (SHIP) specifically excludes wind and hail coverage, most homeowners’ policies provide coverage.

TIP:For more information about the NFIP, ask your insurance agent, or call the NFIP’s toll-free number at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)

For more information

about the NFIP, ask your

insurance representative,

or call the NFIP’s toll-free

number at

1-800-621-FEMA (3362) x29

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Elevation

This method consists of raising a house on an elevated support structure to place it above future flood waters. The exact method can include a number of possibilities that depend upon local conditions, such as expected flood and wind forces, building type and size, and soil bearing capacity. Elevation may be considered for all types of homes, including structures built slab-on-grade or over crawlways and basements. Types of elevated foundations include:

Elevation on Extended Foundation Walls —

The house is elevated and set on walls that have been built up from the original foundation. This method is particularly appropriate where the characteristics of flooding involve up to moderate depths with slow velocities, and is commonly used.

Elevation on Piers —

This method is employed for shallow flooding with slow to moderate veloc-ities. The house is elevated and set on low foundations that are constructed of reinforced masonry block or reinforced concrete.

Elevation on Posts or Columns —

This method is used for shallow to moderate flood depths with slow to moderate velocities. The house is set on taller structures, generally made of wood, steel or concrete, set in pre-dug holes and braced together.

Elevation on Pilings —

This method is employed where high-velocity water could undermine other structures, such as in coastal high-hazard areas. It is also suitable for deep flood depths or poor soil conditions.The house is set on tall foundation pilings, usually wood, that have been driven into the ground.

Elevation on Fill —

This method is limited to areas of low flood depths and low velocities. The house is elevated on compacted soil.

Relocation

Perhaps the only technique for completely preventing future flood damage, this method involves mov-ing a house out of a flood area to a new location where there is no threat of floodmov-ing. The technique for moving most any house in good structural condition is well developed.It is generally more expensive and time-consuming than most elevation techniques, but it can be a very feasible method in many cases.

Levees

This is a method of creating a barrier of compacted soil to keep the water away from a house in areas where flooding is shallow and moderate with low velocity. It can be one of the least expensive tech-niques, and it can be attractively landscaped. Its construction, however, requires great care, and there must be continued attention and maintenance to prevent its failure.

Floodwalls

This method is sometimes practical for areas with low to moderate flooding depths and velocities. As with levees, floodwalls are designed to keep the water away from a house, but are constructed of mate-rials such as masonry block and reinforced concrete. They are more expensive than levees, but if prop-erly designed, do not require as much concern with continued inspection and maintenance. However, because some designs have openings for access to the house, they often require closures and human presence to make sure they are in place prior to flooding.

Closures

Often used in conjunction with other techniques such as floodwalls and levees, closures involve tech-niques for protecting gaps that have been left open for day-to-day convenience, such as walks, doors and driveways.

Retrofitting methods

TIP:The City of Largo can help with advice on retrofitting your property. Call us at 586-7488 to find out more.

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Pinellas County Department of Emergency Management 400 South Fort Harrison Ave.

Clearwater, FL 33756 (813) 464-3800

Southwest Florida Water Management District 2379 Broad St.

Brooksville, FL 34609-6899

(352) 796-7211 or 1-800-423-1476 (in Florida only) Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region IV Hazard Mitigation Division

3003 Chamblee-Tucker Road Atlanta, GA 30341

(770) 220-5416

Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council 4000 Gateway Centre Blvd.

Pinellas Park, FL 33782 (727) 570-5151

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District Post Office Box 4970

Jacksonville, FL 32232-0019 (904) 232-2235

ISO Commercial Risk Services, Inc. 6187 Banyan Circle

Orange Park, FL 32073 1-800-888-4476

Florida Department of Community Affairs Division of Emergency Management 2555 Shumard Oak Blvd.

Tallahassee, FL 32399-2100 (850) 413-9900

Largo Library (Reference Section) 120 Central Park Drive

Largo, FL 33770 (727) 587-6748

Sealants

Sometimes referred to as "dry floodproofing," this method can be used only in areas of very shallow flooding to completely seal a home against water. Because of the tremendous pressure that water can exert against a structure protected by this method, the technique can only be used on brick veneer or masonry construction in good structural condition, and then only when the flood levels cannot exceed two to three feet and flood velocities are negligible.

Utility Protection

Often, very costly damage to utilities such as heating, air conditioning, electrical, and plumbing sys-tems occurs during floods. Simple and relatively low-cost measures can usually prevent damage to these systems, which are essential to the habitability of a residence.

Special Techniques

These are some special floodproofing techniques used in unusual flooding situations, including retro-fitting in alluvial fans, elevation on fill and elevation on reinforced slabs.

You can obtain a list of the flood-related publications available at the Largo Library. A copy of this document is on the City of Largo’s website at www.largo.com/comdev.html

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also has information available on the World Wide Web and on FEMA’s associated Gopher server, including a list of companies that write flood insurance through the

NFIP. To access the Web, use any commercially available Web browser software package or the public domain text-based Web browser called "Lynx" to log onto FEMA’s Web server at www.fema.gov. You can access the Gopher server using most popular communications software packages. The address of the FEMA Gopher serv-er is gophserv-er.fema.gov FEMA also has 24-hour fax-on-demand with a voice-mail menu called FEMA FAX. Dial (202) 646-FEMA (3362).

For more information

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References