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Planning for a Flood

There is no doubt Arapahoe County can get some serious rain! During wet seasons, even a small amount of rain at one time can cause flooding in low-lying areas. Whether flooding is minor or more widespread, it is important to remember to stay out of flood waters.


Staying Safe

Flood water poses a drowning risk for everyone, regardless of their ability to swim. Swiftly moving shallow water can be deadly, and shallow standing water can be dangerous for small children.

You should never drive your vehicle through a flooded area. Not only do you not know how deep the water is, but it is impossible to see the condition of the roadway under the water. Just six inches of water can cause a loss of control and stalling in passenger vehicles. One foot of water will float many vehicles, and two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles, including SUVs and trucks.

Walking in flood waters can also be dangerous due to debris, oil and raw sewage that may be in the water. Do not allow children to play in or near flood waters.


Know Your Coverage

Many homeowners mistakenly believe their homeowner’s insurance policy covers flood damage. It doesn't. Flood insurance is available to homeowners, renters, and businesses whose communities participate in the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Flood insurance can be purchased through any licensed property/casualty insurance professional who is writing flood insurance under arrangements with the Federal Insurance Administration. 

Plan ahead for flood insurance! While there are some exceptions, most policies will not go into effect for 30 days.

Even if you have flood insurance, it is important to know what flood insurance generally does not cover, which can include the following:

  • Damage caused by moisture, mildew or mold that could have been avoided by the property owner
  • Currency, precious metals and valuable papers such as stock certificates
  • Property and belongings outside of a building such as trees, plants, wells, septic systems, walks, decks, patios, fences, seawalls, hot tubs and swimming pools
  • Living expenses such a temporary housing
  • Basement improvements like finished walls, floors or ceilings, or personal belongings that may be kept in a basement, such as furniture and other contents (most policies cover structural elements, essential equipment and other basic items normally located in a basement)
  • There are also some exceptions for coverage in areas below the lowest elevated floor of your home
  • Enclosed areas under the first floor used for storage; the contents will not be covered by flood insurance

Scams

In the aftermath of flood damage, remember that disasters, unfortunately, attract scam artists. Be vigilant and protect your personal assets.

For additional information and resources, download the Arapahoe County Flood Relief and Recovery Assistance Guide at http://www.arapahoegov.com/DocumentCenter/View/1540.