Fallen trees and branches line the street in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew at Hilton Head Island, S.C., on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016. Matthew plowed north along the Atlantic coast, flooding towns and gouging out roads in its path. Jeffrey Collins / AP Photo

SC - FEMA Releases Updated Flood Insurance Rate Maps for Hilton Head Island

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTGS) — The Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) has released updated Flood Insurance rate maps (FIRMs) for Hilton Head Island, town officials shared Wednesday.

The maps may be accessed through the Town of Hilton Head Island's website and show the extent to which areas throughout Hilton Head Island are at risk for flooding.

FEMA released proposed rate maps based on updated coastal modeling in June 2017. The updated maps will become effective for flood insurance on March 23, 2021.

Floodplain Administrator for the Town of Hilton Head, Shari Mendrick, said FIRMs show whether properties are in areas of high, moderate or low flood risk.

“Over time, flood risks change due to weather events, environmental changes, erosion, land use and other factors,” Mendrick said. “Maps are updated periodically to reflect these changes."

"However, the Town Hilton Head Island FIRMs have not been updated since 1986," Mendrick said. "In reviewing the updated FIRMs, many property owners may find that their risk is higher or lower than they thought. If the risk level for a property changes, so may the requirement to carry flood insurance.”

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