PHOENIX (June 21, 2017) – Some northern Maricopa County residents living in the Desert Mountain area have experienced repeated flooding during storms over the past 10 years. The Flood Control District (FCD) will conduct a study to identify existing area flood hazards so residents and homeowner associations can use the information to reduce their potential flood risk. The study area covers 15-square miles and is located in the City of Scottsdale but extends into the Tonto Hills community and a small part of the Town of Carefree. FCD Board of Directors has approved a contract that allows for the Desert Mountain Area Drainage Master Study to start later this month.
This area has not been studied before but has experienced flooding, erosion and sediment deposition. Flood hazard maps, also known as Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs), are important tools in the effort to protect life and property. The level of an area’s flood risk is indicated on the FIRM by a letter. Currently, this study area is designated as a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Zone D. This means there are possible but undetermined flood hazards because there has yet to be an analysis done, as is the case for this area. Flood insurance rates for properties in Zone D are high because the uncertainty of flood risk is high. The study addresses this issue.
“By more clearly identifying existing flood risks in this area,” explained Supervisor Steve Chucri, District 2, “We can help revise these maps to show where the 100-year floodplains are, making flood insurance more affordable for residents and businesses.”
Through this study, FCD will provide options on reducing the highest flooding and erosion hazards and recommendations for future floodplain delineations, additional technical evaluation and smaller flood mitigation projects.
“This area encompasses two watersheds with steep slopes and several large washes,” said Scottsdale Mayor W.J. ‘Jim’ Lane. “Just a few inches of water from a flood can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage. The Flood Control District’s work will provide our homeowners with information needed to help reduce their flood risk and potential cost in damages to their property and home.”
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Community Rating System is a voluntary incentive that recognizes communities for implementing floodplain management practices that exceed the federal minimum requirements of NFIP to provide protection from flooding. In exchange for a community’s proactive efforts to reduce flood risk, policyholders can receive reduced flood insurance premiums for buildings in that area.
“The Flood Control District has participated in the Community Rating System since 1991,” explained Bill Wiley, FCD Chief Engineer and General Manager. “Through our annual accreditation process, residents of unincorporated Maricopa County can receive up to a 30 percent discount on their flood insurance.”
For more information on how to reduce your risk, flood insurance and steps you can take to better prepare for storms, visit FCD.Maricopa.gov.
The Flood Control District of Maricopa County helps residents reduce their risk of injury, death, and property damage from flooding, while still enjoying the natural and beneficial features of floodplains. Learn more about the FCD by visiting www.FCD.Maricopa.Gov or call (602) 768-3500.