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  1. #1
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    Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Just a small update on my flooded workshop. Got about 10" of White Oak River in my workshop a few weeks ago courtesy of FLORENCE .

    Lesson # 1: When it comes to paneling...screw it to the studs!!! It's easier to remodel/make changes if necessary. Fortunately I only used a nail gun on the two end walls.

    Lesson # 2: Use foam insulation if possible. Can we say wiki-wiki-wiki... recently insulated with pink glass...it wicks water!!! Anyway, no sense getting upset over spilled milk so I'm in the process of removing the the knotty barn-side paneling from the interior walls and cutting/removing the lower 24 inches of wet insulation. I am replacing the void areas with Bora-Foam insulation in case any of Florence's relatives visit in the future.

    Lesson # 3: Buy flood insurance! I used to have it but we were told we no longer needed it since we didn't flood during hurricane Floyd and it being the 500 yr flood, bla, bla, bla. Well, we were blessed only to have our crawl space flooded with Florence but you can rest assured that we are getting flood insurance. Never can tell when the 700 or 1000 year storm might show up.

    Lesson # 4: I'm not as fast, productive, strong, flexible, as I once was...and the list goes on
    Last edited by LocoWoodWork; 10-20-2018 at 09:09 AM.
    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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  3. #2
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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Quote Originally Posted by LocoWoodWork View Post
    Just a small update on my flooded workshop. Got about 10" of White Oak River in my workshop a few weeks ago courtesy of FLORENCE .

    Lesson # 1: When it comes to paneling...screw it to the studs!!! It's easier to remodel/make changes if necessary. Fortunately I only used a nail gun on the two end walls.

    Lesson # 2: Use foam insulation if possible. Can we say wiki-wiki-wiki... recently insulated with pink glass...it wicks water!!! Anyway, no sense getting upset over spilled milk so I'm in the process of removing the the knotty barn-side paneling from the interior walls and cutting/removing the lower 24 inches of wet insulation. I am replacing the void areas with Bora-Foam insulation in case any of Florence's relatives visit in the future.

    Lesson # 3: Buy flood insurance! I used to have it but we were told we no longer needed it since it since we didn't flood during hurricane Floyd and it being the 500 yr flood, bla, bla, bla. Well, we were blessed only to have our crawl space flooded with Florence but you can rest assured that we are getting flood insurance. Never can tell when the 700 or 1000 year storm might show up.

    Lesson # 4: I'm not as fast, productive, strong, flexible, as I once was...and the list goes on
    One thing to remember is that a 500 year flood area does not mean that it will flood once every 500 years, it means that there is a .2% change of a flood each year, and a 100 year flood plain area has a 1% chance of flood every year. And I think a lot of areas will be seeing changes in their classification of flood zones, with many flood areas expanding.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    My garage shop has taken on a few inches of water a couple times. It happened because the house and garage are below the street level, there was construction across the street increasing runoff, and the road was not properly sloped towards the drain. I literally got a little river of runoff coming down the driveway and the drain couldn't handle it. The road is now paved and properly sloped and I have not had any problem.

    But my bottom 18 inches of both my shop and car garage are brick. Flooding damaged some stuff we had in boxes on the floor and raised the humidity enough in my shop to cause some rusting of tools, but it was not a structural problem at all.

    This spring, for multiple reasons, I had the underside of my first floor insulated with closed cell foam. Most of it was uninsulated and the little bit of fiberglass that was there was removed by the closed cell contractor. I paid more to get closed cell both because it is a better insulator and because it does not hold water. I doubt I will ever have water in the crawl space but if it happens, the insulation will not hold it making things worse.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Quote Originally Posted by tri4sale View Post
    One thing to remember is that a 500 year flood area does not mean that it will flood once every 500 years, it means that there is a .2% change of a flood each year, and a 100 year flood plain area has a 1% chance of flood every year. And I think a lot of areas will be seeing changes in their classification of flood zones, with many flood areas expanding.
    It's also worthwhile to note that 500 and 1k year floods are based on statistical models that most always don't actually include DATA from a 500 or 1000 year flood... they just look at peak flows in the short record they have available, and make a best guess about the probability of events more extreme than observed. For instance, look at this graph of peak discharge vs. flood return interval... you'll note that the most intense storm that they have data for is a 250y flood... to guess the flow rate of a 1000 year flood, they just follow that trend line up, literally off of the chart. These methods work pretty well, mind you, but become more and more uncertain depending on how far outside the available data you need to extrapolate.



    Also, this method assumes historic climate regimes. Climate change is making our planet hotter and making storms more intense, so models based on historic data are almost certainly underestimating flooding risk.
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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    You can find your location around Maysville by typing in your address in the search box. Most of Maysville is not in a Flood Plain but I don't know about this 100 year or 500 year flood hocus-pocus.

    https://msc.fema.gov/portal/search#searchresultsanchor

    https://flood.nc.gov/ncflood/

    BTW, Florence was an extremely slow moving hurricane that just sat and sat so the rainfall amounts were unusually high when compared to Floyd. I wouldn't rush out and buy flood insurance just in case!
    Last edited by Jeff; 10-10-2018 at 03:41 PM.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Ouch, sorry to hear! Hopefully your tooling and machinery is safe, both in your shop and the others on the property... Also glad to hear your house wasn't affected much. I didn't flood, but will be adding flood insurance myself. Have some friends who got screwed on that (which, I think, is BS).

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    I didn't flood, but will be adding flood insurance myself. Have some friends who got screwed on that (which, I think, is BS).
    You need flood insurance if you're in a flood zone, but other than that you roll the dice and take a chance. You can invest a lot of $$$ in flood insurance premiums and never need it in your lifetime. It's your call though.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
    You need flood insurance if you're in a flood zone, but other than that you roll the dice and take a chance. You can invest a lot of $$$ in flood insurance premiums and never need it in your lifetime. It's your call though.
    Not currently in a flood zone, supposedly will be once the new maps take effect. That said, two friends in Havelock that aren't either, they flooded in Florence. Supposedly, their insurance isn't covering damage or loss due to the flood and they are working with FEMA. That said, this isn't exactly first hand, just what I was told, so I have to choose to believe, or not. My street flooded, but it didn't make it into my home, and would've taken A LOT more water to get into the home.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    We are renting while the building is in progress. With Florence the rental crawl space was flooded to the extent that the A/C air handler was taken out. Took the plumbers 1 1/2 days to pump it out, with the neighbor threatening to call the police, because they were wetting a part of his driveway. Long story short, I found out that the same happened with Mathew and I looked at the grading here at the rental, which directs water directly to the crawl space entrance, with no catching wall. Discussed a solution with the rental agent who had no interest whatsoever, until I threatened to call the owner. The rental agent sent out someone to look at a solution, which is a small diverting wall, no brainer. But that is where it died, never heard anything back.

    So patiently waiting, hoping the same does not happen with Michael, but if it does I will contact the owner directly to make sure she knows this will happen again and again, while there is a simple solution.

    Never trust a rental agency with your property is the lesson I learnt here.

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  12. #10
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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Stay safe everybody with Michael its going to be wet again.
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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Glad you are OK after the storms. I have passed through Maysville numerous times over many years while working in insurance claims in Eastern NC.
    Check the lay of the land around your home and property to see if it is sloping toward your structures. Sometimes a simple grade change can direct rising water away from the foundations and into a drainage system.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    I have an additional comment on flood insurance. My house is on Lake Murray. The official 100 year flood elevation for the lake is 362.5 feet above sea level. The normal summer elevation is 358. When we had our huge rain event a couple years ago, when there was flooding in many areas, SCE&G used the flood gates to keep the lake level below 360 feet. I have no inside track to their reasoning but I know a couple possible reasons for this. First, many homes, including mine, are septic systems and some would flood well below 362.5. That damages the lake which is a source of drinking water. Additionally, the main dam for the lake is earthen. SCE&G had to construct a backup dam of rock reinforced in places with concrete to get their license extended. But there would still be a mess if the water level gets too high and the earthen dam starts to leak. I doubt it can happen but the extreme scenario of a total failure would eliminate the town of Columbia. But SCE&G proved they have sufficient capacity in the flood gates to hold the lake level and they demonstrated that their plan is to not let the lake get close to 362.5.

    But the flood map is what it is. One corner of my dining room foundation is below 362.5. Or it was. I used left over dirt from my shop construction to raise it up against the house and in the crawl space but need to do that 10 feet away form the house and I can get it surveyed again and pay $400 and FEMA will redraw the flood map and exclude me. It is not a pressing matter since I do not have a mortgage and therefore do not have to carry flood insurance (I do not) but it changes the value of the house and the change should not be expensive so I plan to do it some day.

    I would rather pay money to reduce the chance of flood damage to my house than pay for flood insurance.

    The primary concern of FEMA is not things like your HVAC air handler (mine for the first floor is in the crawl space at a little higher elevation but may be low enough to be damaged if this ever happens). What they are worried about is structural failure. The 10 foot requirement is so waves do not pummel your crawl space wall until it collapses. The cost of the flood insurance is hugely lower if you put in open grates so water can go in and back out freely. That will also let critters freely move through and isn't great for heating and possibly cooling costs but it will help you avoid a huge flood insurance bill. Mine varied by a factor of at least 4 between offers when we had it, by the way. I do not understand the huge range. It helped me get a lower quote to point out the floor joists of this room were overbuilt (2x10s on about 8 foot spans) reducing the risk of structural failure.
    Last edited by JimD; 10-18-2018 at 11:42 AM.

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Not all flood plain maps are valid and they are redrawn in a periodic bases. I live up on Lake Gaston. About 15 years ago our county, which is one of the poorest in the state elected to not spend money to actually recertify the maps so my water front lot became a flood zone property. I almost had a heart attack when my mortgage company sent me a bill for flood insurance. In reality it would take a biblical flood to hit me. You see a power company actually owns the Lake and they control development. One rule is you can't build below the height of the spill way. My house sits 15 feet above the spill way. If I flood it means the Kerr Lake dam burst or the Atlantic ocean rose over 225 feet. Cost me about $1,000 to get the required surveys and permits to get my property excluded.
    Last edited by ScottM; 10-19-2018 at 07:13 AM.
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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Wilkins View Post
    Glad you are OK after the storms. I have passed through Maysville numerous times over many years while working in insurance claims in Eastern NC.
    Check the lay of the land around your home and property to see if it is sloping toward your structures. Sometimes a simple grade change can direct rising water away from the foundations and into a drainage system.
    Sloping won't help in my case, it was the White Oak River itself that got me. On the bright side... my shop got the best "spring cleaning" ever!!!
    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Florence

    Quote Originally Posted by LocoWoodWork View Post
    Sloping won't help in my case, it was the White Oak River itself that got me. On the bright side... my shop got the best "spring cleaning" ever!!!
    So you are indeed in the flood plain of the White Oak river and have to consider if the high cost of flood insurance is worth it for another 50-100 years. Have you found your exact location in the various zones of the river around Maysville?

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