FEMA Says: TX Fire Victims Need Flood Insurance

December 15, 2011

This may seem counter-intuitive, but FEMA is advising the survivors of last spring and summers’ wildfires in Texas to consider flood insurance on their homes and offices.

Why flood insurance? Because when the wildfires burned away the trees, grasses and other vegetation in the scorched areas, the healthy plant roots that usually soak up a lot of rainwater were also lost. All that charred land means that even normal storm runoff has the potential to cause mudslides, flooding, and severe erosion.

The risk of wildfire-related flood damage is greatest, of course, for property that actually burned, but it houses and other buildings either below or downstream from the burned areas are at a heightened risk of flooding, as well. In fact, it is just this sort of interconnectedness that makes flooding the most common natural disaster in the United States.

Flood insurance can be obtained through the agent who sold your regular homeowners or renter’s insurance policy.