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Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Keep safe before and during a flood

While new homes built in Westminster are prohibited from being constructed in a floodplain, some of the city’s older homes may be in a floodplain if located near a stream or creek. Even if you live in an older home and have never experienced flooding, there is still the possibility that it could happen in the future.

Help reduce the impacts of flooding:

  • Do not dump anything in ditches or streams. If your property is next to a ditch or stream, you can help by keeping the banks clear of brush and debris.
  • Check with the Building Division before you build, alter, re-grade or fill on your property. A permit may be needed to ensure that projects do not cause flooding problems on other properties.

You can visit the Community Development Department at City Hall or the Mile High Flood District’s website at www.mhfd.org/residents/flood-safety to see if your home is located in a mapped floodplain.

If you live in a floodplain, there are regulations associated with flood proofing your home. Before implementing any flood proofing measures, contact the city’s Engineering Division at engineering@cityofwestminster.us or 303-658-2120 for more information.

If you live in a floodplain, you may need flood insurance. Homeowner policies typically do not include coverage for flood damage.

The city participates in the National Flood Insurance Program, which allows you to purchase a separate flood insurance policy. This coverage may be required by your lender when applying for a home mortgage. Be sure it covers the building’s contents and its structure. Learn more at www.fema.gov/flood-insurance.

If you have experienced a flood, drainage or sewer backup problems, the city may have information about your property that could be useful. If you have a flooding problem, please contact the city’s Engineering Division.

Keep safe during a flood:

  • Don’t walk through flowing water. Drowning is the number one cause of flood deaths.
  • Don’t drive through a flooded area. More people drown in their cars than anywhere else.
  • Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. Report downed power lines to Xcel Energy at 1-800-895-1999.
  • Have your electricity turned off by Xcel Energy. Some appliances, such as televisions, keep electrical charges after they have been unplugged.
  • Don’t use appliances or motors that have been wet unless they have been taken apart, cleaned and dried out.
  • Look out for small animals that may have been flooded out of their homes and are seeking shelter in your home.
  • Be alert for gas leaks. Don’t smoke or use candles, lanterns or open flames unless you know the gas has been turned off and the area has been ventilated.

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