FEMA updating Kauai flood maps

LIHUE — The Federal Emergency Management Agency is updating Kauai County’s flood maps in 2020.

New maps identify the latest flood hazards, assess flood risks, and provide data to guide local stakeholders in taking effective mitigation actions, resulting in safer and more resilient communities.

Before the new Kauai Flood Insurance Rate Maps become effective, there is a 90-day appeal period from now to Feb. 12. During that time, residents with technical and scientific information, such as detailed hydraulic or hydrologic data, can appeal the flood-risk information on the preliminary maps.

Flood hazards are dynamic and change frequently due to a variety of factors, including weather patterns, erosion and new development, a press release said.

FEMA worked with Kauai County to collect new or updated flood-hazard data and modernize the county’s flood maps to reflect these changes, which may also affect building and insurance requirements.

The local mapping project is part of a nationwide effort led by FEMA to increase local knowledge of flood risks and support actions to address and reduce the effects of flooding on new and improved structures.

FEMA encourages residents to review the preliminary flood maps to learn about local flood risks, potential future flood-insurance requirements, and identify any concerns or questions about the information provided.

Risk of flooding affects almost every corner of the nation. In total, 98% of counties have experienced a flood event, which makes floods the most common and widespread of all weather-related natural disasters.

Info: County Floodplain Manager Stanford Iwamoto at 241-4896 or siwamoto@kauai.gov

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