If you live near a coastal area, it’s important that you’re always on the lookout for issues with coastal storm surge. Coastal storm surge can easily lead to serious flooding, which can cause problems with home structure and even create dangerous situations for those living nearby.
Here are the 19 states that have potential problems with this type of home flooding.
What Is Coastal Storm Surge?
Very simply, storm surge is a rise of water that happens due to issues with a storm. It typically happens because a hurricane is moving in toward the coast, pushing water up above the predicted tide.
It’s incredibly complex, but storm surge can cause a pileup of water in areas that aren’t typically built to deal with that water, which can be one of the most dangerous situations in a storm, both for the home and for the people living in it.
What States Are at Highest Risk?
A higher-category hurricane will certainly cause more homes to move into the coastal storm surge danger zone, but large hurricanes are certainly not unheard of in many coastal areas. If a Category 5 hurricane hits the coast, this is the number of single-family homes that are at risk of flooding due to coastal storm surge.
- 2,851,642 – Florida
- 843,349 – Louisiana
- 563,024 – Texas
- 471,323 – New Jersey
- 467,787 – New York
- 410,277 – Virginia
- 363,875 – South Carolina
- 267,802 – North Carolina
- 164,504 – Georgia
- 151,979 – Massachusetts
- 126,589 – Maryland
- 102,596 – Mississippi
- 85,794 – Pennsylvania
- 67,433 – Connecticut
- 67,055 – Delaware
- 51,929 – Alabama
- 26,336 – Rhode Island
- 18,149 – Maine
- 9,336 – New Hampshire
As you can see, Florida is by far at the highest risk, largely due to its shape. A hurricane can pass over the bottom half of Florida completely, possibly causing coastal storm surge on both sides – by Category 2, over a million homes in Florida are at risk. However, there are other states that need to think seriously about this risk as well, with 12 states that have over 100,000 homes at risk.
How Can You Prepare for Coastal Storm Surge?
Preparing for coastal storm surge requires assuming that the surge will happen at some point. You need to make sure that your home is made to withstand water impacts, and that means more than just elevating the home and hoping for the best.
Elevation is not the only element of floodproofing your home; you need to make sure that elevation is floodproofed.
Additionally, it’s important to get flood insurance if you’re at risk for coastal storm surge, just in case.
Storm surge is a serious issue that impacts a significant number of homes. Overall, a whopping 7,120,779 single-family homes are at risk of flooding due to storm surge in the event of a Category 5 hurricane. If you live in any of those 19 states, don’t assume that your home will be fine if a hurricane happens. Talk to an expert about improving your floodproofing in general, and make sure you have flood insurance just in case.