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RIEMA Urges Purchase of Flood Insurance Policies for All Property Owners

Nearly two years ago, historic-level floods ravaged Rhode Island. Is your home or business protected now?

This week (March 12 – 16) is National Flood Awareness Week. The Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency (RIEMA) urges anyone with a home or business located close to a body of water to purchase flood insurance. Standard home and business-owners' insurance policies do not cover flood-related damages. A separate flood insurance policy can be purchased through your local insurance agent.

"Purchasing a flood insurance policy for your home or business is critical," said RIEMA's State Floodplain Coordinator Michelle Burnett. "It is also important to purchase the policy now as there is a 30-day waiting period before any new policy goes into effect. We do not want any Rhode Islander to be left without flood coverage when they need it most."

There are nearly 500,000 homes and businesses in Rhode Island, and only 3% currently have flood insurance. March and April are historically when flooding occurs in Rhode Island, but heavy rains can cause flooding any time of the year. The average annual premium in Rhode Island is about $1,200. Because all communities in the state participate in the National Flood Insurance Program, anyone can purchase flood insurance.

Homeowners or business owners who have property that is not located in a floodplain but still want to purchase flood insurance can receive reduced insurance rates through a local insurance agent.

For additional assistance, contact RIEMA's Floodplain Management Program at 946-9996 or visit or

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