Barbour urges MS River residents to prepare for flooding - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Barbour urges MS River residents to prepare for flooding

JACKSON, MS (WLOX) -

Gov. Haley Barbour today urged residents along the Mississippi River to prepare for major flooding over the next two weeks. The river is expected to rise three feet higher than it did during the 2008 flood.

The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency expects the river to reach its flood stage this weekend. The water will continue to rise over the next two weeks.

"This is one disaster we can prepare for ahead of time," Gov. Barbour said. "Anyone living or owning property in the affected area needs to take this situation seriously and move any property to higher ground."

Residents and business owners in low-lying areas near the river should take precautions to protect their property. Mississippians need to review their flood insurance policies with their insurance agent and know what is covered. This weekend, individuals should check their property and move important items to safer locations.

The following chart prepared by the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency illustrates estimated flood stages and dates:

Location Reaching flood stage Flood stage Forecasted crest date Forecasted crest height Feet above flood stage
Tunica April 29 44 feet May 12 52.5 feet 8.5 feet
Bolivar April 29 37 feet May 14 48.5 feet 11.5 feet
Greenville April 29 48 feet May 15 60 feet 12 feet
Vicksburg May 1 43 feet May 18 53.5 feet 10.5 feet
Natchez April 30 48 feet May 20 60 feet 12 feet

When reviewing flood insurance, policy holders need to remember three important facts about the National Flood Insurance Program:

  1. Contents coverage must be purchased separately.
  2. It is not a valued policy. A valued policy pays the limit of liability in the event of a total loss.  For example: Your home is totally destroyed by a fire and it costs $150,000 to rebuild.  If your homeowner's insurance policy is a valued policy with a $200,000 limit of liability on the building, you would receive $200,000.  Flood insurance pays just the replacement cost or ACV of actual damages, up to the policy limit.
  3. It is not guaranteed replacement cost policy.  A guaranteed replacement cost policy pays the cost to rebuild your home regardless of the limit of liability.  For example: Your home is totally destroyed by a fire and it costs $200,000 to rebuild.  If your homeowner's insurance policy is a guaranteed replacement cost policy with a $150,000 limit of liability on the building, you would receive $200,000.  Flood insurance does not pay more than the policy limit.

People can visit www.msema.org and www.floodsmart.gov to learn more about the Mississippi River flood and flood insurance.

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