New flood maps for Cameron take effect Nov. 16 - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

New flood maps for Cameron take effect Nov. 16

CAMERON PARISH, LA (KPLC) -

Effective Nov. 16, new flood maps issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will be enforced in Cameron Parish.

The new mapping places portions of Cameron in a high risk zone, increasing insurance premiums for those that fall in that zone.

FEMA is encouraging residents without flood insurance to sign up for plans before the new maps go into place to avoid paying the higher premiums.

For those who already have flood insurance, FEMA says they will be allowed to "grandfather" their current zone, helping them avoid new zone rates.

According to Cheryl Nugent with the National Flood Insurance Company, there are a lot of variables that play a part in how much more homeowners should expect to pay after new maps are issued.

"You have to look at what zone you're now in and the type of house you own among other things," Nugent said. "Shortly after new maps are issued (if not grandfathered in) you may qualify for a preferred rate which is less than $400 for the maximum coverage policy."

Residents in Cameron are mandated by their electric company to have flood insurance, but longtime Cameron native Lawrence Mallett, having lived through many storms, thinks flooding and the worry of flood insurance wouldn't be such an issue if it weren't for weirs in the marshes throughout the Parish.

"When they put the weirs there, there's nowhere for the water to drain out into so of course it's going to flood" said Mallett. "Before those weirs, yes we got storms, but we didn't have to worry about flooding with every one."

Watch later editions of 7News to see the new maps and learn more about what they mean for you.

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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