Friday, May 29, 2009

Experts warn that Long Island homeowners should get flood insurance now, not later

Herald Community Online (New York): Atlantic Beach resident Morris Kramer was all of 4 years old when the great hurricane of 1938 – a Category 3 monster dubbed the Long Island Express – slammed into the Island, buffeting the shoreline with 120-mph winds and sending a wall of water rushing inland and toppling homes. Kramer remembers little of the catastrophe. To this day, however, his older sister distinctly recalls seeing benches from the Long Beach boardwalk floating in nearby streets.

...Kramer, a one-time Nassau Herald columnist who wrote on civic affairs, said people must – must – consider purchasing flood insurance for their homes or apartments. He said that any residents living south of Sunrise Highway are potentially in danger of having their homes flooded in a Category 3 hurricane – d an assertion largely supported by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which administers the National Flood Insurance Program. Floods are not covered by homeowner’s insurance. You must take out flood insurance separately.
FEMA recently rewrote its Flood Insurance Rate Maps, or FIRMs, and included a far larger number of communities in high-risk zones, called Special Flood Hazard Areas. Thousands of homes are affected. The agency also expanded the boundaries of current low-risk zones, like Merrick and Bellmore. And it included a number of neighborhoods not traditionally thought of as flood zones, like parts of Valley Stream, though they were designated lower-risk.

….At the same time, the federal government is beginning to prepare for potentially higher sea levels in the coming decades as Antarctic and Greenland ice melts at an ever-increasing rate in a warmer world brought on by climate change. Scientists call it the greenhouse effect. Gases such as carbon dioxide and methane are released into the atmosphere when fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas are burned. The gases trap infrared heat from the sun, heating the planet and melting ancient glacial ice into the oceans. New York State is so concerned about the potential for rising oceans that in 2007 it impaneled the Task Force on Sea Level Rise, a division of the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

…Denis Miller, a flood insurance specialist with an office in Long Beach, said now is the time to buy flood insurance, despite the ailing economy. If you do so before July 31, you will be ensured of receiving the �grand-fathered� flood insurance rate from FEMA, meaning that for the first year of your policy, you will be charged the current low-risk rate rather than the substantially higher rate that will take effect in September. After one year, if you live in a high-risk zone, new or old, you will be charged half of what you would have paid if you had waited until August or later to take out a policy.

…Miller says that many South Shore residents will discover that their homes are being moved from low-risk to high-risk flood zones thanks to map modernization, and many are unaware that their zones are being changed.

Thomas Moran's 1907 painting, "The Old Bridge Over Hook Pond, East Hampton, Long Island"


elenora123 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
elenora123 said...

very interesting i so much love what i see in this site,and i will like to be member of the site.
Love your site. Is there anything I can do to help YOU? I have been telling my friends to visit your site. Thanks to you, the information was unavailable. Now I am getting action. I can. Just let me know. Blessings and good wishes to all of you!! You are doing a tremendous service!

cheap home insurance