Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Identify Your Flood Risk

Flood risks change over time. Water flow and drainage patterns can change dramatically due to environmental changes, land use, and other forces. Consequently, the likelihood of flooding can also change. However, older flood hazard maps may not reflect these changes. Based on new digital mapping techniques, detailed, reliable, and current information on county and local community flood hazards is now available on updated flood hazard maps. These new preliminary flood maps present a better picture of areas most likely to be affected by flooding and provide a better foundation for making important building, land use, and flood insurance decisions.

Property owners need to know how the flood risk for their property may have changed. FEMA provides a mapping tool specifically for this mapping project, known as the El Paso Map Change Viewer, that will show which areas on the new preliminary flood map have increased in flood risk and which ones have decreased. The following are simplified instructions for using the Viewer; for more detailed instructions, download the El Paso Map Change Viewer Fact Sheet.

Follow the steps below to review flood changes in your area. This tool functions best in Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, or Apple Safari browsers on your computer. 

Step 1. To launch the interactive tool, enter into your browser. Users will be greeted with a disclaimer window. Click OK . The default view is the Comparison Layer. 

Step 2. At the top left-hand corner of the viewer, users can enter a location, address or latitude/longitude point, and the viewer will zoom to your location of interest. Once the tool identifies the address or location entered by the user, it will load the preliminary flood hazard information. If the address pin (black dot) is in a red or green shaded area, the property address is included in an area where the flood data has been updated/changed. 

Step 3. Please take a moment to select the Preliminary data set from the layer list to review your property once more. If the property is within a teal polygon, it is in a high-risk flood hazard area. If the property address is in a grey-shaded area, its flood risk is moderate. The layer list button also offers a chance to review the current effective flood map.

For other features that may enhance your experience, please download and read the El Paso Map Change Viewer Fact Sheet.


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