Flood Plain Information
Floods In Bedford Township?
For most Bedford residents, thoughts of flood disasters are probably the last thing on most minds. Yet, floods can and do happen in our relatively flat community. Bedford is crisscrossed by many public and private drains and creeks. Most of these drainage ways are natural and some are manmade. During periods of heavy rain, this drainage system can become overloaded, and floodwaters often spill over the banks. The most severe flooding in Monroe County occurs near areas around several rivers that traverse the county, and along the Lake Erie Shoreline. The rivers are the River Raisin and its tributaries, the Huron River and Plum Creek. Communities that are most affected by flooding of these rivers include Dundee Township, the Village of Dundee, Raisinville Township, Monroe Township, Frenchtown Township and the City of Monroe. Bedford Township is generally more affected by urban flooding from runoff during heavy downpours. During heavy rain events Monroe County Emergency Management Division will issue flood warnings by notifying the local broadcast media.
Flooding in Bedford Township is generally not a problem unless your home is located in or near a 100-year flood plain. What many homeowners do not know is that standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover damage caused by flooding.
Since 1981, Bedford has participated in the Federal Emergency Management Agency National Flood Insurance Program or NFIP. By participating in this program, nearly all homeowners in Bedford Township are eligible for flood insurance coverage through their insurance agents. In addition, because Bedford Township participates in FEMA’s Community Rating System and adheres to stringent flood plain management practices, homeowners receive an automatic 10 percent discount in flood insurance premiums.
Through a study completed in 1981, FEMA identified many areas in the community that were susceptible to flooding. The flood boundaries are defined as 100 year and 500 hundred-year flood zones. The 100 year flood zone, or Zone A is an area along either side of a stream that will likely flood during a storm that would typically happen every 100 years. The 500-year flood zone is a much wider area that extends beyond the 100-year flood zone and would result from a storm that typically happens every five hundred years.
There may be existing homes in Bedford Township that are in a 100-year flood zone that do not have flood insurance. This could be because the home existed before Bedford’s involvement with the NFIP. When these homes are sold or refinanced, the lending institutions are now required to determine if the home is in a 100-year flood plain. If it is, they must inform the homeowner or buyer that flood insurance is mandatory.
If a home is located in a 100-year flood zone there are protective measures than can be taken to flood proof the structure. Furnaces, water heaters, laundry appliance and electrical panel boxes should be relocated to an area that is not prone to flooding. In the basement, floor drains and interior and exterior backwater valves can be installed. It is also a good idea to keep valuable items out of flood prone areas or at least make them easily accessible if flooding is expected. In many cases, there will not be ample warning time to move essential items from the flood prone area, so you may want to permanently store them in another area. For more information click here.
When there is extensive urban runoff and small stream flooding there are several safety factors to keep in mind.
1. Pay close attention to special storm warnings issued by the national Weather Service.
2. Do not attempt to cross a flowing stream by foot or by car since undercurrents from fast moving water can knock you down or even move a large vehicle.
3. Do not allow children to go near flooded areas, ditches, culverts and storm drains.
4. If your vehicle stalls in high water abandon it immediately and move to higher ground.
5. Evacuate flood hazard areas in time of impending flood or when instructed to do so by emergency personnel.
6. Shut off electric circuits at the electrical panel. If this is not possible, disconnect all electrical appliances. Also, shut off all gas valves and water services in the home.
If you suspect that your home may be in a flood hazard area Bedford Township maintains copies of the flood maps for the Township. Township personnel can assist you in reading the maps and provide you with instructions on what steps can be taken to reduce the potential for flood damage. We also maintain a supply of informational pamphlets on flooding in the Zoning/Building Department. Other documents may be downloaded from the links shown below.