Flood Preparedness

Excluding fire, floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters. Most communities experience some kind of flooding after spring rains, heavy thunderstorms or winter snow thaw. Dam failures can also produce flooding. Flash floods result from intense storms dropping large amounts of rain within a brief period with little or no warning. Since 1900, floods have killed more than 10,000 people throughout the United States. Four people died in Roanoke as a result of flooding in 1985 and countless numbers of people have been rescued from floodwaters in the City of Roanoke throughout the years.

Most of the severe flooding in Roanoke occurs along the following 13 major creeks and rivers: Barnhardt (or Cravens) Creek, Garnand Branch, Glade Creek,Gum Spring, Lick Run, Mudlick Creek, Murdock Creek, Murray Run, Ore Branch, Peters Creek, Roanoke River, Tinker Creek and Trout Run. The flooding of November 1985 was the worst of record on the Roanoke River and many of the above tributaries. It was a reminder of the danger and damage that can result from widespread heavy rainfall in our community. The most recent significant flooding event in September 2004 caused more than $14 million in property damage in the Roanoke Valley. Because of the mountainous terrain throughout the Roanoke Valley, flooding on all of the creeks except the Roanoke River usually occurs quickly and with high velocities.
Street Flooding
The City of Roanoke participates in National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP is a Federal program created by Congress to mitigate future flood losses nationwide through sound, community-enforced building and zoning ordinances and to provide access to affordable, federally backed flood insurance protection for property owners. You can view the NFIP summary of coverage available here. The City of Roanoke is committed to protecting citizens and their property from floods, as well as helping reduce rates that its citizens pay for flood insurance.  The City of Roanoke is in the Community Rating System (CRS), under the NFIP, giving discounts to citizens on their annual flood insurance premiums. The City of Roanoke is a class 7, giving citizens a 15% premium reduction in Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and 5% premium reduction in Non-SFHA. Questions? Learn more about the NFIP here.

This website provides important information on flooding hazards, and can also help qualify all city residents for a reduction in flood insurance rates. Please read and share appropriate information and safety tips with all members of your household. If you have any questions, please call the Stormwater Division 
at 540-853-5900.