Flood Map Modernization Information

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in conjunction with the North Carolina Division of Emergency Management (NCDEM) are in the process of updating flood maps for Brunswick County, including the Town of Carolina Shores.

Map Modernization

Map modernization information can be found by visiting the official website: NC FLOOD MAPS

These modernized maps are considered Preliminary Floodplain Maps, information material is available here that explains Preliminary Floodplain Maps and how flood mapping works: Preliminary Floodplain Maps Information Sheet.

Learning Guide

Town volunteers have put together a learning guide to help facilitate a learning process. Please consider researching and learning more: Learning Guide


The Town of Carolina Shores has received notice that new flood maps will become effective August 28, 2018.

Decision Process for Residents

  1. Determine whether you are in the flood zone on preliminary maps. To do this, click the following link: http://fris.nc.gov/fris/ Select the appropriate state and appropriate property address. Once the map is zoomed to the property you are inquiring about, toggle between "Effective" and "Preliminary". Effective means current, preliminary means new (to be official August 28, 2018).
  2. On the Preliminary Map toggle: If the property is not in the blue area (flood zone), stop. You are outside the AE flood zone and have a flood risk less than 1% annually. One important decision point remains, you need to think about your individual risk. See the following risk worksheet: Risk Worksheet
  3. On the Preliminary Map toggle: If the property is in the blue area (flood zone), you are in the AE flood zone and have a flood risk of 1% annually. You need to see the following risk worksheet, complete the first page and pay close attention to the second page on options you have. See the following risk worksheet: Risk Worksheet
  4. If you fall within the parameters of #3 above, you need to act now to complete the information in the risk worksheet. It is very important that you understand that flood insurance rates will escalate after August 28, 2018 and you need to talk with your insurance agent about rate grandfathering, and insurance enrollment prior to July 1, 2018. Flood map changes and insurance, see the information sheet: Flood map changes and insurance

Low-lying and Flood Prone Areas

Many areas prone to flooding are not identified on flood hazard maps. Shallow flooding can be a problem in developed areas that are naturally low or that are flood prone. Shallow flooding can occur where drainage systems are overloaded by large storms, where sheet flows occur between areas of higher elevation and those with lower elevation, depressed areas, swamp areas, or areas that have high ground water and poor soils for infiltration. It is the responsibility of residents to know if they live in a flood prone area, notice is given at the time of permitting about low-lying and shallow flooding threats; however, each resident should review the notice to better understand their risk.

Shallow Flooding Map - map of area with previous known shallow flooding potential

Notice of Shallow Flooding - all residents in the shallow flooding areas and those that are adjacent to a mapped drainage feature receive the notice

Drainage Map - mapped drainage features are on this map

In conclusion, just because you are not in a flood zone does not preclude you from being flooded, you are at moderate risk if you are considered to reside in an area subject to shallow flooding. You are at high risk if your property has previously flooded.

New Home and Now New Maps?

Residents in all the neighborhoods of the Town need to work with their HOA on how to relay elevation data as part of the Letter of Map Change (LOMC) process discussed in "Flood map changes and insurance", the Town is working with neighborhoods on this process now. All neighborhoods are encouraged to inquire with the Town about how to work on the Letter of Map Change (LOMC) process. This is a good method, as outlined in the literature, to credit the fill used in the construction of the neighborhood to remove properties that fall within the newly mapped areas from the regulated floodplain. If approved by FEMA, the LOMC process for each neighborhood would effectively remove properties from the floodplain due to the fact that substantial fill was used in the construction of the subdivision.

Help! We want to know more!

The Town has committed itself to a process of public education and will gladly hold a public information session for your neighborhood. Please let Town Hall know that you are interested.

Flood Map Documents

The document library for the flood maps is below with an explanation of each:

Fact Sheet on Preliminary Flood Maps Use this to understand preliminary flood maps and how the mapping process works
Risk Worksheet Use this sheet to understand your own individual flood risk and to make decisions for yourself on how to protect from that risk: elevate, insure, protect.
Flood Maps and Flood Insurance Use this sheet to understand the preliminary flood maps impact on insurance including mandatory purchase requirements
Shallow Flooding Information Packet Notice on shallow flooding and information on managing risk
Shallow Flooding Map Map on past areas that have experienced shallow flooding