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Low Risk is Not No Risk

Flood Sources in Dare County

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Storm surge from hurricanes is not the only cause of flooding.

Rainfall from hurricanes and other storms can cause flooding.  Even homes in areas that generally do not flood may be damaged due to flash flooding from rain, high groundwater levels and the naturally low island topography of the Outer Banks.  Even homes on higher grounds may flood. Rainfall from Hurricane Matthew in October 2016 exceeded 10 inches in Dare County communities. Strong winds combined with saturated soils from excessive rainfall can result in downed trees. 

Properties located in low-risk Shaded X or X-zones are still vulnerable to flooding. A low risk flood zone does not mean your property will not flood. 25% of flood losses occur in low-risk flood zones. 

Alteration of natural drainage patterns and wetland areas can result in increased risks of flooding. Wetland areas help dissipate wave energy and reduce erosion.   

Drainage ditches and streams should be maintained and kept free of debris. Heavy rain and surface runoff may overwhelm stormwater improvements resulting in floodwaters overflowing into roads and bridges. Rain and surface runoff can cause stormwater systems to overflow.   

Flooding in Dare County can be caused by tides, wind, storm surge, stormwater systems overflowing, and heavy rainfall.

Rainfall from coastal storms can be excessive, flooding homes and businesses built on higher ground.   

 NC 12 in Kill Devil Hills during Hurricane Matthew October 2016