Flood Information

What do I need to know about floods?

Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters, second only to fires. There is a 26% chance of experiencing a flood during the life of a 30-year mortgage (more than 6 times the likelihood of a fire). As little as one foot of (moving) water can move most cars off the road. Just six inches of fast-moving flood water can sweep a person off his or her feet.

Flooding in the Village can come from different sources: tidal surges from hurricanes and tropical storms, heavy rains, clogged or blocked drainage pipes and ditches. Flooding in Florida can come at any time with little warning so it is best to be informed.

We are particularly at risk during hurricane season, which runs from June 1 through November 30. Hurricanes and tropical storms can bring dangerous storm surges. These weather events pose a great risk to life and property for both coastal residents, though all inland inhabitants are also at risk due to the low elevation of many of the homes in the Village.

During extended periods of heavy rainfall, certain low‐lying neighborhoods within the Village are subject to considerable flood damage and isolation caused by inability of natural and mechanical drainage systems to effectively remove the water.

What areas are especially at risk for experiencing a flood?

  • Low lying areas
  • Coastal areas
  • Areas downstream from large bodies of water
  • Floodplains or low areas adjacent to a river (also known as Special Flood Hazard Areas or SPHA)

What is flood insurance?

Flood insurance protects you from the financial devastation caused by floods. Even a few inches of water can bring thousands of dollars in repair and restoration costs. Most homeowners insurance does not cover floods.

Flood insurance, like earthquake insurance, is “single peril” insurance, sold separately from homeowners insurance. Flood insurance protects against losses to buildings and their contents, not the land surrounding them. The coverage applies whether the flooding results from heavy or prolonged rains, coastal storm surge, blocked storm drainage systems, or other causes. To be considered a flood, the waters must cover at least two acres or affect at least two properties. Flood insurance is available both within and outside of floodplains. Your property’s flood risk is shown on flood hazard maps. Different types of policies are available depending on your flood risk.

The Village of Tequesta Building Department recommends that all Village residents obtain flood insurance. Most homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood damage and flooding can occur anywhere due to a variety of causes, including heavy rainfall. Call your insurance agent for additional information.

For information about your property’s flood zone or on any property you may be interested in, please visit the Palm Beach County Flood Zone Determination System or contact us.

Renters should purchase flood insurance for the contents of their home. Do not wait for an impending storm to purchase flood insurance because there is a 30‐day waiting period after purchase. For more information about flood insurance, go to the floodsmart.gov website, speak with your insurance agent, or contact us.

Where are the Special Flood Hazard Areas and what are their building requirements?

The Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance of the Village of Tequesta provides the requirements for all development located within the Village; including work exempt from Florida Building Code requirements. Building Department personnel are prepared to provide information regarding your property and whether or not it lies within a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). Floodplain Development Permits are required prior to building permit issue if the project is located in an SFHA; Elevation Certificates and/or No-Rise/No-Impact Certifications may also be needed.

New and significantly improved buildings located within the SFHA will need to be brought up to code under the current flood zone map standards. Ensuring your building is uptocode can also help you to obtain competitive insurance rates.

Local Mitigation Strategy

The Local Mitigation Strategy is a unified, coordinated effort among County and municipal governments to reduce the County’s vulnerability to the impacts of identified natural and man-made hazards, including flooding and its causes, and plans preventative and corrective measures to reduce the risk of current and future hazards.  Please click here for a copy of the latest Palm Beach County Local Mitigation Strategy publication.

What resources are available for flood information and preparedness?