Am I in a Floodplain?

Am I in a Floodplain?
Everyone lives in a flood zone whether you live in a low-, moderate- or high-risk flood area. You do not need to live near water to be flooded. Floods are caused by storms, melting snow, hurricanes, water backup due to inadequate or overloaded drainage systems, as well as broken water mains.

Prior to purchasing a property, refinancing for a new bank loan, or applying for a permit to build a new home or structure, it is wise to inquire whether or not you are “in a floodplain”. The basis for our determinations is provided on the FEMA maps, or FIRMS (Flood Insurance Rate Maps). The FIRMS are designed to show the “100 year floodplains” and were originally used primarily for flood insurance. Now they are the chief tool that we use to provide the best available flood risk information for a geographical area of the County.

With today’s technology, there are many easy ways that the public can view the floodplain information for themselves. Four methods for viewing the floodplain maps are shown below. Alternatively, if you are having trouble locating a specific property, you can easily submit a request for flood zone information by filling out a Flood Information Request online. The Flood Control District will respond to your request for information by providing you will a flood zone determination.

Please note: The cities of Apache Junction, Casa Grande and the Town of Kearny conduct their own flood hazard determinations. If your property lies within the incorporated boundaries of one these cities, please contact their office for the most accurate information.

Where to Find/View the Flood Insurance Rate Maps
Method 1: FEMA's actual (official) flood insurance rate maps
  1. Go to: http://msc.fema.gov/
  2. Enter an address in the top left portion of the screen. Sometimes this tool does not work, but if it does, it will bring up the map that contains that address.
  3. Click on the world symbol under the "view" heading to bring up a copy of the map.
  4. Zoom in and scroll until you find the property you are looking for.
  5. Keep in mind that sometimes there are map revisions that aren't shown on these maps.
Method 2: FEMA's Online Map Viewer
  1. Go to: http://msc.fema.gov/
  2. Click on "Map Viewer - Web located in the center of the page under the "What are you looking for?" section.
  3. Use the address locator and other tools to navigate to the location you are interested.
  4. Use the check boxes on the legend to turn on and off the available data. The flood zones are listed under the "National Flood Hazard Layer."
  5. Keep in mind that sometimes there are map revisions that aren't shown on these maps.
Method 3: Google Earth
  1. You must have Google Earth Installed on your Computer.
  2. Go to: https://hazards.fema.gov/femaportal/wps/portal/NFHLWMSkmzdownload
  3. Click on the link for "Stay Dry v2.0.kmz" to open the flood zone information in Google Earth.
  4. Navigate to the property you are interested in look at in Google Earth.
  5. Turn on the floodplain data under the “temporary places” pane
  6. Keep in mind that sometimes there are map revisions that aren't shown on these maps.
Method 4: Pinal County Map Viewer
  1. Go to: http://pinalcountyaz.gov/Departments/InformationTechnology/GIS/Pages/Home.aspx
  2. Click on the link next to “Interactive Map Viewers”
  3. Click on “Interactive Zoning GIS Maps”
  4. Agree to the disclaimer.
  5. Use the tools to navigate to the property you are interested in.
  6. You can also search for an address or parcel number by clicking on the "Search" menu located on the left side of the map
  7. Once you are at the property, you can turn on the flood zone information by going over to the "Layer" menu and navigating through the “Surface and Hydrology” layers.
  8. Keep in mind that sometimes there are map revisions that aren't shown on these maps.
  9. The Interactive Zoning GIS Map can also be found on Pinal County’s homepage: http://pinalcountyaz.gov