If you’ve managed to keep up with flood map news in addition to everything else that’s going on, kudos to you! Then you know that Monroe County and Key West entered into agreements with Woods Hole Group to analyze FEMA’s proposed flood maps. Other municipalities have also followed suit. The preliminary maps presented in January 2020 feature inconsistencies for which staff have requested further clarification from FEMA.

FEMA has effectively declined further review leaving local governments to hire consultants to analyze the science and data. The consultants have begun their work with an expected completion date in mid-October. They will provide comparison maps showing differences in flood zones with updated results.

Currently Woods Hole Group, working with Ransom Consulting as a subcontractor, are in the model set up phase and on track to start running models in the next couple of weeks. Woods Hole Group was hired by Monroe County in 2019 prior to the release of the draft maps in August, at the same time FIRM hired Ransom Consulting. Now both are collaborating in a unified plan to conduct the required analyses. 

Inconsistencies that have been identified in FEMA’s preliminary maps include statistical analysis and selection of storm sets, wave model validation, and inaccurate modeling for taking into account the reef, mangroves and other topographical features.

Monroe County was part of a larger study that also included Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Broward Counties. Including Monroe with other counties that are dissimilar in topographic and geographic features may have contributed to the inconsistencies.

The effort is continuing throughout the summer and early fall to position Monroe County and the municipalities for a formal, scientific based challenge should that be required once the maps are released by FEMA. 

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This