State Officials: Now Is The Time To Get Flood Insurance

Apr 26, 2018

Credit Howard Lake / Creative Commons

Hurricane season begins in about a month, and state leaders are urging Virginia residents to start planning now.

At this moment, no hurricanes are headed toward Virginia. But that can change, and hurricane season is just around the corner. That’s why state leaders are urging Virginians to get flood insurance.

Michael McShane at Old Dominion University says everybody should get flood insurance, whether you live in a flood plain or not. "Twenty five percent of the people who are flooded typically live outside the high-risk zone," McShane says. "So the high-risk zone is not a good indicator of whether you’re going to flood.”

McShane says everybody is at risk, so check your insurance policy to see if you already have flood insurance. If you don’t live in a high-risk zone, it’s probably pretty cheap anyway.

Gina DiCicco is the floodplain program planner for the Department of Conservation and Recreation. “When Hurricane Matthew hit in 2016, about 70 percent of individual assistance claims came from outside of the special flood hazard area. So even those who are not in a mapped flood plain still have flood risk,” according to DiCicco.

If you think your homeowner insurance covers floods think again. It doesn’t. If you get flood insurance by the beginning of May, the policy will be active just in time for hurricane season. 

Click here for information about flooding and the Virginia Flood Risk Information System

Click here for information on flood insurance options

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.