Flood Protection Information
Flood Safety Measures
You can protect yourself from flood hazards by taking measures to ensure the safety of life and property before, during, and after a flood occurs.
Property Protection Measures
Every year, flooding causes more property damage in the United States than any other type of Natural Disaster. While recent construction practices and regulations have made new homes less prone to flooding many existing structures remain susceptible. Throughout the country, there is a growing interest from property owners to develop practical and cost effective methods for reducing or eliminating exposures to flooding. Several effective ways include acquisition and relocation of a building to a site not subject to flooding, construction of floodwalls or berms to keep water away from the property, or retrofitting structures to make them flood proof.
Before buying property, be sure to check with the City of Panama City Planning Department 850-872-3025 about all the requirements that you will need to build to meet the City of Panama City Floodplain Ordinance. Contact EPCI to make sure you meet all building permit requirements 850-818-0213.
Protect Natural Floodplain Functions
A community can lose a portion of its drainage system carrying or storage capacity due to dumping, debris, soil erosion, and sedimentation and overgrowth of vegetation. When this happens, flooding occurs more frequently and reaches higher elevations, subjecting properties otherwise protected to unnecessary risk of damage. Keep grass clippings and other debris out of stormwater drainage systems to prevent clogging and loss of stormwater and treatment capacity. You can also visit our NPDES section for information on not dumping into our storm drains.
Flood plains are areas adjacent to rivers, ponds, lakes, and oceans that are periodically flooded at different points in time. Floodplains are hydrologically important, environmentally sensitive, and ecologically productive areas that perform many natural functions. They contain both cultural resources that are great value to society. Flooding occurs naturally along every river and coastal areas. Flood waters can carry nutrient-rich sediments which contribute to a fertile environment for vegetation. Floodplains are beneficial for wildlife by creating a variety of habitats for fish and other animals. In addition, floodplains are important because of storage and conveyance, protection of water quality, and recharge of groundwater.
Marshes, near-shore ocean bottoms, bays, coastal dune lakes, tidal flats, and estuaries are all components that make up the coastal floodplain of the City of Panama City. Coastal beaches, dunes, banks, and tidal flats all play roles in protecting land from destructive coastal storms, such as hurricanes. In coastal systems, aside from major storm events where waves may overrun large areas, inundation follows a largely predictable tidal cycle. Coastal floodplains are recognized for their importance to estuarine and marine fisheries. Estuarine wetlands are important for breeding, nursery, and feeding grounds for marine fisheries and coastal floodplains are important to waterfowl and other wildlife. Shallow coastal areas such as estuaries, tidal flats and rivers, and beaches are significant for shellfish, reptiles, and other fin-fish. The water quality in these areas is affected by changes in sediments, salinity, nutrients, oxygen, temperature, and addition of various pollutants. Rivers, creeks, and lakes that have an unimpeded connection to the sea provide breeding and feeding grounds for a variety of coastal marine life. Do not pick sea oats or tamper with sea turtle nests – it's illegal and carries a significant fine