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Flooding & Flood Safety
The City of Hampton's low-lying geographic location, with many waterways, make much of the city extremely susceptible to flooding.

There are two types of areas affected by flooding:
  • The floodplain: This is the area mapped by the federal government - FEMA - identifying areas most likely to flood during intense rain - which may or may not be accompanied by tidal surges. It also determines whether you need flood insurance.
  • Surge flooding. This area is affected when a hurricane, tropical storm or nor-easter cause persistent high winds and changes in air pressure that push water toward the shore in a storm surge. When this occurs at high tide and/or in combination with heavy rains, it can affect larger areas. Most of Hampton is in a surge zone. The surge zone map below shows areas that could affected according to the strength of a hurricane (Category 1, 2, etc.) and is used as a guide for determining evacuations.

NEW Preliminary FEMA Flood Map 
Periodically, flood maps are reviewed and updated based on flooding data. The federal government has released new maps for Hampton, made public in late 2014. They are preliminary, but changes can only be made based on technical appeals. You can read FEMA's fact sheet on mapping flood hazards in Hampton.

Mapping tools
  • FEMA's comparative map allows you to type in your address (with ZIP code) and see side-by-side your flood risk under the current maps and under the new maps. You can also scroll or pan and see other parts of the city. Download the instructions for help viewing and printing a map of your property.
  • The city's GIS maps also show the data and are good for printing out the new flooding zone for your address, and will help you with the official FEMA map. Download the instructions or view a step-by-step video.
  • Finally, if you are purchasing flood insurance, you will need official documentation of your flood zone. This is a print from the official FEMA map (also called FIRM for Federal Insurance Rate Map) or FIRMette for a smaller section that shows your address. (Your insurance agent may be able to do this for you.) Your address will not be highlighted, however, so also print out the GIS map so you can locate your property on your federal map. Download the instructions or view a step-by-step video.

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