Build Responsibly

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  • Before building, determine local requirements Pic 1to determine mandatory elevations for building.  All structures in the SFHA of Accomack County are required to be reviewed for compliance with the Flood Ordinance, even small backyard storage buildings that do not require a building permit.
  • Within the unincorporated areas of Accomack County, residential structures and associated machinery and equipment are required to be two (2) feet higher than the Base Flood Elevation indicated on FIRMs.  The difference between the FEMA requirement and the amount the first floor is in excess of the requirement provides an additional safety factor and is referred to as freeboard.  The freeboard requirement varies within the incorporated towns of Accomack County.  Studies have shown that the increased cost of construction as a result of adding one (1) – three (3) feet of freeboard is more than offset by lowered insurance premiums.
  • Areas within the Coastal A Zone or in the area known at the Limits of Moderate Wave Action on the Flood Insurance Rate Maps are required to adhere to VE Zone construction standards.
  • Evaluate your property to determine if you can site the structure outside of the Special Flood Hazard Area.
  • If you have an older structure in the flood zone that is not in compliance with requirements, consider taking action to protect your property by retrofitting it.  This can involve elevating the structure, elevating equipment, anchoring fuel tanks or adding flood vents to the structure.

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