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Public Safety vs. 100-Year Floodplain Doug Bellomo ASFPM Annual Meeting May 21, 2008.

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Presentation on theme: "Public Safety vs. 100-Year Floodplain Doug Bellomo ASFPM Annual Meeting May 21, 2008."— Presentation transcript:

1 Public Safety vs. 100-Year Floodplain Doug Bellomo ASFPM Annual Meeting May 21, 2008

2 Flood Map Modernization Potential CFM Exam Question 1 Are you safe if you live in the 100-year floodplain?

3 Flood Map Modernization Potential CFM Exam Question 2 Are you safe if you live outside the 100-year floodplain?

4 Flood Map Modernization Some Hints…… The answers to both questions is the same. The floodplain status has little to do with it.

5 Flood Map Modernization It’s a Trick Question  The answer is “you are safe” if: You know your risks. Avoid them to the maximum extent possible. Mitigate against what you can’t avoid. Insure against the rest.

6 Flood Map Modernization It’s a Trick Question  The answer is “you are not safe” if you: Don’t listen to the science. Close your eyes to the risks. Don’t effectively communicate the threats. Hope nothing will happen. View insurance as a burden rather than a benefit.

7 Flood Map Modernization It is Possible To Be Safe in A Floodplain  There are communities that not only live with their floodplains, but thrive with them. Common traits:  They take responsibility and are accountable for their actions.  They are respectful of their neighbors.  They take a long view focused on sustainability. They do not:  Externalize their public safety responsibilities.  Turn a deaf ear or blind eye to their neighbors.  Gamble their future for short term gain.

8 Flood Map Modernization Healthy Communities  Find a way to balance what some consider competing priorities: Economic Vitality Public Safety Environmental Stewardship  They have: A vision of their future A plan on how to get there, and  They systematically identify and mitigate the risks and remove barriers in the way of achieving that vision

9 Flood Map Modernization Mitigation Is All Around Us  Initial exposure at 16 years old.  The Virginia DMV.  Google “IPDE”  A four step process outlined by American Safety Council. Potential Hazard IDENTIFY PREDICT DECIDE EXECUTE

10 Flood Map Modernization The Four Step “IPDE” Process  Step 1: Identify “A driver must practice scanning the driving environment for the primary purpose of IDENTIFYING real and potential hazards.”  Step 2: Predict “What might happen should you encounter a real or potential hazard.”  Step 3: Decide “What driver action you will implement (accelerate, steer, decelerate, or any combination of these vehicle control maneuvers) to avoid a crash with a real (or potential) hazard.”  Step 4: Execute “Carry out your decided-upon action.” SOUND FAMILIAR?

11 1 1 IdentifyRisk 2 2 AssessRisk 3 3 CommunicateRisk 4 4 MitigateRisk Risk MAP: REDUCE LOSS OF LIFE & PROPERTY AT LOCAL LEVELS Transfer Risk Reduce Risk Map Risk Data Goal – Measure Quantifiable Risk Reduction Assess Present & Future Risks Plan for Risk Risk Mapping, Assessment, and Planning (Risk MAP) Lifecycle

12 Flood Map Modernization Alas It’s Not So Simple  Communities are not cars traveling down a road.  But if they were: They would have more than one person at the wheel. Multiple people would be working the clutch, gas and brake. There would be at least one, perhaps two, navigating the course. The car would occasionally stop to let some out and others in. There would be kids screaming in the back seat.

13 Flood Map Modernization The Trick To Safety  Bring order to the car.  Get everyone working together.  Make sure the navigator has a good map and knows where they are going (a plan).  Stop at McDonalds to keep the kids happy and quiet.

14 Flood Map Modernization Risk MAP  Risk MAP aims to bring order to the car.  Lays out a cyclical process that focuses mostly on the “Identify,” but also a bit on the “Assess/Predict,” and the “Decide/Plan/Communicate.”  This gives you the time and information you need to: Convince your companies, states, or communities that mitigation pays Focus on taking the actions necessary to reduce risk

15 Flood Map Modernization Safety and the 1% Standard  There is no silver bullet, no levee, dam or other engineering wonder that will make a community “safe” enough they can ignore flood threats.  The 1% standard is not a “safety” standard – it’s a minimum requirement to be eligible for federal flood insurance.  Following the minimum standards will make you safer than not doing these things, but it won’t necessarily make you safe.  Real improvements to safety come from taking responsibility and employing a thoughtful honest process routinely over the long term.  Good luck on the exam!


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