Experts Warn Some Coastal Residents Should Consider Rebuilding Inland

Coastal flooding forces reconsideration of development

Debbie Elliott
October 5, 2018

The sun is shining again on North Carolina today as the remnants of Hurricane Florence have moved into the mid-Atlantic. But a catastrophe is still unfolding, as rivers rise after days of torrential rains.

Water rescues continue for a fifth day. At the Emergency Operations Center in Raleigh, John Dorman with the North Carolina Department of Emergency Management is directing a team calculating flood levels, “then taking those flood elevations and determining if buildings will be flooded and how deep,” he explains.

They’re using a web-based application called the Flood Inundation Map and Alert Network. “We’ll click on this one down here in a town called Bregal, it’s in the Cape Fear river basin,” says Dorman.

The database includes where buildings are, their first floor elevation, and how high the water is. It even estimates the cost of the damage. Dorman zooms in on a mobile home in Bregal.

“That mobile home has got about $11,907 dollars damage to it,” he says. “But more importantly it’s got 2 feet of water in the mobile home. This really helps out on the response side to know exactly where to go.”

The same model also shows whether the property is covered by flood insurance. Dorman says early indications are that the majority of the destruction here won’t be covered. He says the state has been working to change that and get people to think about insurance and mitigation — taking measures to reduce the risk of a flood.

Read full article.