New floodplain information to take effect for Vermilion Parish

New flood maps go into effect January 19, 2011 for all residents and business owners in Vermilion Parish.

The new flood insurance rate maps show locations of the 1 percent and 0.2 percent floodplains and floodways, which indicate possible flooding risks. This could mean a change in floodplain status, FEMA officials said.

"We encourage everyone to look at the flood maps now and to be familiar with flood risks in the community," FEMA Region Six Administrator Tony Russell said in the statement. "The maps can help you make informed decisions about flood protection."

While many property owners are required by mortgage and lending companies to have flood insurance, FEMA and the National Flood Insurance Program strongly recommend that all homeowners have flood insurance.

You do not have to be in mapped floodplain to flood.

Floodplain administrators have copies of the maps available for public viewing.

In addition, current policy holders and those planning to purchase NFIP protection are strongly encouraged to contact their insurance agent or company to ensure that they have adequate coverage and that policies account for new flood risk data.

Those who purchase flood insurance before January 19 may be able to grandfather the current flood zone saving money on flood insurance.

For more information go to www.floodsmart.gov.

-- Daily Advertiser, December 28, 20101