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Old 04-24-2010, 08:51 AM
 
98 posts, read 165,271 times
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I don't have my resources at my fingertips, so the last real hurricane that hit - what were your experiences?

UpTheCreek - what is the general area where you live in VA and is flood insurance PART of your homeowners policy or a separate rider?

Also - what are your thoughts on a whole house generator?

Thank you everybody for all your insights - please keep 'em coming!
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Old 04-24-2010, 10:53 AM
 
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When storms do hit this area, you have to be prepared to take care of yourself. The area is not prepared to deal with any type of storm.

There are both tornadoes and hurricanes in this area.

The last hurricane, Isabelle, I had no power for a week. Thankfully there were only some shingles lost from the roof, but a lot of people didn't have the same luck I had. Trees on top of homes, roofs blown off, major flooding, you name it.

This report recently came out,
Report: Va. Beach at risk for hurricane storm surge | HamptonRoads.com | PilotOnline.com

VA Beach is only second to Miami when it comes to a cat 5 storm surge risk.

Think a cat 5 couldn't happen? Do you think the Suffolk residents blown away last year from the tornado thought they were going loose their house when the funnel cloud came?

I agree a cat 5 isn't likely, but never consider it impossible.

Again, my biggest advice is to protect yourself because nobody in this area is going to help you.

As for a whole house generator, it would be nice, but probably not needed. Hurricanes don't come every year, but they do come. My bones tell me it's been quiet for far too long... I'm worried about this year.
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Old 04-24-2010, 11:51 PM
 
125 posts, read 458,988 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Where'sHome? View Post
UpTheCreek - what is the general area where you live in VA and is flood insurance PART of your homeowners policy or a separate rider?

Also - what are your thoughts on a whole house generator?
We are in York County on the water side. Our home is I believe 7 feet above sea level. Our flood insurance (and I'm pretty sure that most all at least in flood-prone areas) is a separate rider and is part of the National Flood Insurance Program.

A whole-home generator? Eh, it's okay if you're a bit inland. If you're so close that you're prone to flooding, you want to get the heck out of dodge while the going is clear, then come back to recover the damage. Generators are good but not as good as a hotel. I love camping but the ridiculously hot, humid conditions in this area during hurricane season aren't really conducive to roughing it for weeks at a time.
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Old 04-25-2010, 07:16 AM
 
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UpTheCreek -
has you house ever flooded? How far inland does the surge actually get? Since the VB area of VA is flat as a pancake I would imagine the water could go quite a way.

Talking to friends who have lived throughout the gulf coast and hurricanes, they mentioned the looting/robberies that they saw happen when people evacuate their homes. Have you seen this as well?

Thank you!
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Old 04-25-2010, 09:30 AM
 
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I live in VA Beach, and we are not required to have flood insurance. In November we were surrounded by flooding, but we were fine. I'm thinking we'll buy flood insurance soon, so we're covered for the season this year. I called, and because we're not in a flood zone it's only 173$ a year for us. As for a generator, we're getting one that will keep our fridge and freezer going. I don't think we need one for the whole house.
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Old 04-25-2010, 12:01 PM
 
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I've been to floodsmart.gov and that's one of the worst sites I've seen. It's AWFUL to try to get around and I still haven't been able to find the flood maps. It looks more like a sales site for flood insurance.

Do you have any sites that show actual flood maps? UH Grad posted the most helpful maps I've been able to look at. Any other sites would be helpful....

Spazkat - was the flooding due to annual/normal flooding or storm/hurricane sruges?

Thank you for your help!
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Old 04-25-2010, 01:04 PM
 
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We had a really bad Nor'easter. We have them every year. I would be more worried about them than hurricanes because we seem to have them every year. I've lived in this area over 20 years, and there has never been a devastating hurricane in that time. We've been really lucky. Some people will talk about Floyd, but that was a result of rain fall from the slow moving remnants of the storm that made landfall in Cape Fear NC. It was posted earlier in this thread we are protected by the geography of the area, and looking at landfall records we haven't been directly hit since 1944 in VAB.


Here's a thread about the nor'easter
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Old 04-25-2010, 08:50 PM
 
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I would advise having a generator available if you can. The neighborhood I lived in in VB was pretty old and had above ground power lines and tons of trees. Once a hurricane (or even a severe thunderstorm) blew through, lots of trees would go down and take out power lines. Isabel knocked our power out for 8 days, and we hooked up a generator to our refrigerator and a few other appliances. Flooding was never a problem in my neighborhood, but power outages were for sure. A generator proved to be a great buy.

Also, a chainsaw is handy too. Isabel left my neighborhood looking like a war zone with fallen trees on every street it seemed. A big pine tree in my front yard fell into the street, blocking it off, so after the storm cleared me, my mom, and everyone else on our street helped to cut it up and clear the road for power trucks and whatnot. The whole neighborhood came together, actually. It was kinda neat thinking back on it.
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Old 04-26-2010, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Chesapeake, VA USA
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When Isabel hit, I was living near Lynnhaven Mall. We had no flooding but were without power for a few days. I believe the storm made landfall on Thursday, we lost power Thursday morning and it returned around midday Sunday. Other than spoiled food, no damage to anything.

Now, my parents live out in Hickory on a few acres. They were without power for over a week and lost a number of trees. Luckily none hit the house. They have a generator though, and had no real problems beyond the mess from the trees.
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Old 04-26-2010, 10:10 AM
 
161 posts, read 643,271 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Where'sHome? View Post
I think the person's comment I read was just to compare the potential for damages to the area - not that the land specs are similar...

I've been looking at floodsmart.gov and it lists every area I've plugged in as a high risk for flood. Other sources I read talk about hurricanes hitting NC first as you have mentioned. The vast majority of sources view surge as the greatest risk for flooding. Are you living or from the Hampton Roads area?

Which climate models are you refering to? And can you provide the sources or websites so I can continue to research?

Thank you for your help!
I didn't read through the comments so sorry if this was brought up already. The first person who replied has it right. The land specs are important because the type of land (sea level, below sea level, etc.) is a large indicator of the potential damage from a hurricane.

Hurricanes are are not usually that bad here. I have been here my whole life and have never been in a hurricane above a category 2. Usually hurricanes will skirt the coast and by the time they arrive here, they will be weakened or will not be a direct hit. However, if a category 5 hits, every place will be damaged regardless. "Hampton Roads is a Katrina II" or whatever the person said is like saying every place that has the risk of being directly impacted by a category 5 is a "Katrina II". I mean, that's a super powerful storm. Of course we would be underwater and have significant damage.

BUT category 5s are rare here. As I said, it's usually a tropical storm, or category 1 or 2 with only certain areas flooding (Norfolk and a few other low-lying areas). Just have flood insurance, take precautions for storm preaparation, talk to people about their hurricane experience (like you're already doing) and ride it out. It's really not that bad.

BTW, hurricanes don't hit here every year either. I don't think we've had one for a couple years now that I think of it.
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