Flood Hazard Information for Residents and Businesses of Brookhaven

Community Flood Information

The Borough of Brookhaven is situated between Chester Creek to the west and Ridley Creek to the east. Over the years, creeks and storm drainage pipes have seen flooding to varying degrees which has impacted both private property as well as public infrastructure such as downed telephone lines, power failures, and closed roads and bridges. There are a few other isolated areas in the borough that have been subject to localized flooding and storm water back-up.

Are you in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA or aka 100-year floodplain)?

If you live near an existing creek or drainage ditch and you currently do not have flood insurance, you should check to see if your house and/or property are located in a SFHA. If youare considering buying a home, renovating your existing home or doing improvements to your property, you should check to see if your house and/or property are located in a SFHA.Existing structures or proposed construction or substantial improvements can be checked to see if they are located within the Special Flood Hazard Area, SFHA by reviewing FEMA FIRM maps online on FEMA’s website, ‘Flood Map Service Center’ or by calling the Borough of Brookhaven at 610-874-2557 and ask for the Code Office. Elevation certificates are available– if on file.

 

Insure your property against flood hazards

Your homeowner’s insurance policy does NOT cover losses due to flooding. Brookhaven Borough participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and flood insurance is

available for almost all enclosed buildings and its contents. Maintaining flood insurance coverage for buildings is strongly recommended since properties

located in a SFHA have a 26% chance of experiencing a flood during the life of a 30-year mortgage. This means that it is about five times more likely to get damaged by flood than by a

severe fire. Homes and businesses located in high-risk flood areas with mortgages from federally regulated or insured lenders are required to have flood insurance.

Approved elevation certificates may help in reducing your flood insurance premium. Elevation certificates are required to ensure that construction or substantial improvements in the SFHA

will comply with Borough ordinances. Starting in 2016, the Borough will start the process to post copies of new ‘Elevation Certificates’ on our website as a public service. Elevation

certificates are available – if on file. The Borough of Brookhaven cannot warranty or guarantee any elevation certificate or the information contained therein that were prepared by

others.

Protect yourself and your loved ones during a flood hazard

The best to protect yourself and those you care about from floods is through preparedness.Before a flood occurs, create a family disaster plan and a family disaster supply kit. Go to

www.ready.gov for more information.If you are in a car or need to evacuate your residence during a flood, please take the following minimum precautions:

 Avoid driving thru flood-covered roads since it is difficult to judge water depth or road

damage below the waters surface.

 Avoid touching or swallowing flood-water as it may be contaminated.

 Stay away from downed wires as they can be extremely dangerous.If indoors during a flood, please take the following minimum precautions:

 Stay tuned to radio or TV to get the latest emergency information.

 Keep a battery operated radio or TV in case of power outages.

 Evacuate your home if asked to do so. If outdoors during a flood, please take the following minimum precautions:

 Move to high ground.

 Stay clear of flood waters.

 Avoid touching or swallowing flood-water as it may be contaminated.

 Stay away from downed wires as they can be extremely dangerous.

 Do not try to walk through moving water since the surface is slippery and as little as 6 inches of water can knock you off your feet.


Protect your property during a flood hazard

Aside from a major retrofit as raising your house above the 100-year floodplain elevation, there are minor things you can do to reduce damages, such as but not limited to:

 Raise electrical outlets, switches, junction boxes, at least one foot above the 100-year floodplain elevation.

 Raise your heater, hot water heater and any other mechanical or electrical equipment at least one foot above the 100-year floodplain elevation.

 Install a back-flow preventer on your sanitary lateral to prevent sewage back-ups.

 Raise and anchor outdoor equipment and items to prevent them from getting washed downstream.

 

Build Responsibly

Check with the Building Department before you build, alter, regrade or fill your property. A permit is needed to ensure that your project is compliant with all regulations. These regulations

are designed to protect your property from flood damage and to make sure you don’t cause a drainage problem to your neighbors. To find out how to get a permit contact the Borough Code

Official.

In the event that your building is damaged from a flood, please note that the NFIP requires that if the cumulative cost of the improvements to a building equals or exceeds 50% of the buildings

market value, then the building must meet the same construction requirements as new construction.

Protect our creeks and drainage systems

Do not dump debris or place fill, sheds, structures in the floodway or storm drainage systems. Structures and fill reduces flood carrying capacity and increases flood hazards. Debris or

improperly anchored equipment or structures can become detached and carried by floodwaters downstream and potentially block downstream stream channels and culverts.

Don’t pour oil grease, pesticides, or other pollutants down storm drains, ditches, or stream. If you see someone placing fill or building in an area that is probably a floodplain, you should

contact the Borough. Anonymous reports will be accepted.

Flood Protection Assistance

Find out if you are in a floodplain area. Permits are required for development such as building, altering, regrading or filling in the SFHA (Special Flood Hazard Area). The SFHA is defined by

FEMA as the land area covered by the floodwaters of the base flood on NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program) maps. In Brookhaven, the SFHA includes, but is not limited to, Zones A, A1-

30, and AE. The Borough can provide direction. Please call the Borough of Brookhaven at 610-874-2557 and ask for the Code Office. We urge you to inquire about flood insurance coverage

from your insurance agent.