Flood insurance is designed to provide an alternative to disaster assistance to reduce the escalating costs of repairing damage to buildings and their contents caused by floods.
Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters--except fire. Most communities in the United States have experienced some kind of flooding, after spring rains, heavy thunderstorms, or winter snow thaws.
A flood is defined by the National Flood Insurance Program as: "A general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of two or more acres of normally dry land area or of two or more properties (at least one of which is your property) from:
• Overflow of inland or tidal waters,
• Unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source, or
• A mudflow.
The collapse or subsidence of land along the shore of a lake or similar body of water as a result of erosion or undermining caused by waves or currents of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels that result in a flood."
Floods can be slow, or fast rising but generally develop over a period of days. Mitigation includes any activities that prevent an emergency, reduce the chance of an emergency happening, or lessen the damaging effects of unavoidable emergencies. Investing in mitigation steps now, such as, engaging in floodplain management activities, constructing barriers, such as levees, and purchasing flood insurance will help reduce the amount of structural damage to your home and financial loss from building and crop damage should a flood or flash flood occur.
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