Flood Awareness Information

Floodplain Management, Hazard Mitigation, & Storm Water Management

Leigh Leblanc, Permits/Floodplain Management, leigh@gonzalesla.com

Janet McCrory, Utilities/Floodplain Management, janet@gonzalesla.com

Jackie Baumann, Chief Engineer, jackie@gonzalesla.com

The Floodplain Management, Hazard Mitigation, and Storm water pollution Departments strive to lessen the risk of flooding and implement long-term actions now to reduce the loss of life and property from the impact of future disasters in the City of Gonzales.

We provide the following services:

  • Flood Zone Determination and Flood Map Inquiries
  • Education and Outreach for Natural Hazards
  • City of Gonzales’s Hazard Mitigation Plan Update
  • Community Rating System (CRS) Program for the City of Gonzales
  • Elevation Certificates
  • Storm Water Management Information

Are You Prepared

Parish All Hazards Preparedness Guide

Helping our citizens learn how to be prepared for emergencies is a priority. The Ascension Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (AP OHSEP) has produced the all-hazards preparedness guide to generate public awareness and encourage you to develop your own readiness initiatives for your family. We hope this guide will prepare you and your family to be self-sufficient following a major disaster.

Flood Awareness Information

One of the best sources of information about protecting your home from flooding is the Floods and Hurricanes site administered by the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service (www.lsuagcenter.com/topics/family_home). Communities with slab-on-grade foundations (even communities not in Louisiana) could refer web users to this site.

The Emergency Operations Plan is needed to coordinate the response of emergency personnel and supporting services of all parish and municipal agencies in the event of an emergency or disaster and during the aftermath thereof.

FloodSmart www.floodsmart.gov

FEMA’s flood insurance page www.fema.gov/business/nfip

We encourage people to watch this video featuring City of Gonzales Mayor Barney Arceneaux offering tips and information on what to do in the case of requiring flood insurance.

Know your flood hazards and what you can do about it.

You may be in a special flood hazard area. Flooding in our City is caused by both backwater and headwater.   Duration, intensity, and location of the rain event are the factors that influence the City’s flooding. Floods are dangerous. Even though they appear to move slowly (three feet per second), a flood two feet deep can knock a man off his feet and float a car.

Your property may be high enough that it was not flooded recently or ever. However, it can still be flooded in the future because the next flood could be worse. If you are in the floodplain, the odds are that someday your property will be damaged. This following gives you some idea of what you can do to protect yourself.

Here is something you can do to protect your family and property from flooding:

Buy flood insurance. Even if you’re not in the mapped floodplain, you may be subject to local drainage flooding. In either case, flood insurance can be a good investment because homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover damage from flooding. To find out more about flood insurance contact your property insurance agent to see what policy is right for you. Don’t wait for the next flood.

Do not walk or drive through flood waters. Currents are deceptive; six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet. Do not drive around barriers, as the road or bridges may be washed out.

Be Prepared.  Preparing for an emergency can reduce the possibility of personal injury, loss of life and damage to property. Know your flood warnings signals, create an emergency plan, and prepare a disaster supply kit. To find out more information on flood warnings and emergency preparedness; contact your local Emergency Preparedness office or see the City of Gonzales web page for more flood awareness information.

Protect your property.  Talk to us about protecting your house or business. You can protect your home or business from drainage and flooding problems by modifying you building to minimize flood damage. Where flooding is shallow, measures such as small floodwalls, regarding the yard, and floodproofing the wall or utilities can be relatively inexpensive. Where flooding is deep you may need to elevate your building. For more information on flood proofing your building there are publications in the public libraries Check with the Building Department before you build, alter, regrade or fill your property. A permit is required for any type of development including new construction, substantial improvements, placement of fill, paving or excavation to ensure that a project is compliant with all regulations. These regulations are designed to protect your property from flood damage and to make sure you don’t cause a drainage problem for neighbors. To find out how to get a permit, contact your permit office(225)647-2841.

Protect your drainage system and natural floodplain functions.  Don’t pour oil grease, pesticides or other pollutants down storm drains or into the ditches and streams. Our streams and wetlands help moderate flooding and are habitat for fish and other wild life that provides us with recreation or food. Let’s protect them and their homes. The city has and ordinance that makes it illegal to dump debris in streams channels and drainage systems. You must utilize storm water protection/erosion control when building, keeping building debris and pollutants out of the storm drains. The city also has a drainage maintenance program which can remove blockages from a drainage ditch or stream such as downed trees and branches. To report problems, call the Department of Public Works 225-647-2841 for further assistance.

Before you commit yourself to buying property, do the following: The first thing you should do is to check your flood hazard. Flood maps and flood protection references are available at City Hall. You may visit the Building Department at the City Hall to see if you are in a mapped floodplain. If so, we can give you more information, such as past flood problems in the area, if there is a LOMA and copies of elevation certificates on buildings built in the floodplain since 1991 if available. Even if you are not in a floodplain, there still may be a risk of flooding. Ask the real estate agent if it requires flood insurance; ask the seller or neighbors if it has ever flooded or if it is subject to other hazards, such as sewer backups or subsidence. Talk to the building department about the building and zoning regulations. In accordance with State law LSA-R.S. 9:3198 every transfer of land or building are required to provide a flood hazard discloser statement to prospective buyers. For more information contact the City of Gonzales Permit Office (225) 647-2841.