Flood, Wind and Water

Patricia Skinner  |  1/7/2007 1:13:28 AM

Roughly 30% of Louisiana’s land mass lies in Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs), which we refer to as “the flood zone.”

  • Some of the southern-most parishes are entirely flood-prone.
  • Flood patterns change, and areas not in a designated SFHA have flooded.
  • The Louisiana coastline is receding, thus increasing the exposure of inland areas to hurricane winds and storm surge

Homes in North and South Louisiana are exposed to high winds but generally of different types. The wind zones are mapped and provide a basis for building wind-resistant structures.

  • South Louisiana is in a hurricane zone; the closer to the Gulf, the higher the wind speed risk.
  • Tornadoes are common in North Louisiana and along the edges of hurricanes in the southern parishes.
  • High winds can put great forces on a building, including shear loads (racking), lateral loads (push, pull) on wall connections and uplift on the roof.

In most of Louisiana it rains -- often and hard. Homes in Louisiana need to be built with special attention to preventing water intrusion.

  • Southeast Louisiana and coastal areas are in an extreme annual rainfall region (more than 60 inches).
  • The remainder of Louisiana is in a high annual rainfall region (40-60 inches).

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