According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), flooding is the number one natural disaster in the United States. Whether caused by storm surges, coastal storms, overflows of water systems, rain or snowfall, floods can cause plenty of destruction and damage within seconds. This destruction costs billions in recovery, restoration and rebuilding every single year.
Between 2010 and 2013, FEMA conducted an annual nationwide study of flood risk awareness. Shockingly, only 10 percent of those surveyed said they believed their residences were at risk of flooding. Since floods can occur anywhere, it’s crucial to gain awareness of your community’s risks, plus learn how you can prepare for, react to and recover from a flood if one were to hit your neighborhood.
That’s where FEMA’s High Water Mark Initiative comes in. Learn more about this awareness program with help from the professionals at ServiceMaster Restore®.
What is FEMA’s High Water Mark Initiative?
FEMA’s High Water Mark Initiative, or HWM Initiative, is a community-based awareness program designed to increase communities’ awareness of their flood risk, as well as provide tips on how to mitigate those risks moving forward. The program also includes tools and resources for local officials, emergency personnel, community leaders and FEMA entities to provide helpful flood information to all local citizens.
What does the HWM Initiative do?
As part of the HWM Initiative, communities agree to do specific things designed to help inform residents about flood risk and mitigation action. There are a few different roles within the HWM Initiative, with the community taking on a big portion of the responsibility. As a community, members take part in the following:
- Determine and agree to specific mitigation actions.
- Post HWM signs throughout the community to inform individuals of high-profile flood locations.
- Share details on how individuals can protect themselves, their families and their property from flood risk.
What is your flood risk?
Technically, everyone lives in some sort of flood zone. Each zone is designated at a low, moderate or high risk of flooding. If you’re unsure if your community is taking part in an HWM Initiative this year, do your part by checking the FEMA Flood Service Map Center. This tool determines your area’s flood risk to help you better prepare for one in your area. If you live in a high-risk area, you may need to prepare for flood season and learn how to protect your property from flood damage.
Call the flood damage experts at ServiceMaster Restore
The goal of the HWM Initiative is to help communities reduce their risk of floods. Unfortunately, accidents still happen. If you’ve been impacted by a flood from any type of disaster, call on the professionals at ServiceMaster Restore. Our water damage restoration services are ready 24/7 every day of the year to help get your home back to normal fast. With our expert knowledge and innovative equipment, we can restore your home back to pre-loss conditions as quickly as possible. We’ll even work with your insurance to make the process a little bit easier for you and your family.