Hazard Mitigation

Image of a home being worked on after a disaster

Knowing your likely hazards and having a good prevention (also known as a mit-i-ga-tion) plan is the first step to lowering your chances of suffering property damage from a natural hazard.

North Carolina Emergency Management works with people, business owners and local leaders to lower the impacts of natural dangers on homes, businesses and community structure. Examples of hazard prevention efforts are:

  • Buying homes found in high hazard areas,
  • Raising up flood-prone properties,
  • Giving help in updating local hazard prevention plans,
  • Showing businesses ways to lower risks, and
  • Promoting good growth and building practices outside of high hazard areas.

To learn more about keeping your property safe, go to:

For Individuals

It is key that people and business owners know their risks. They should take steps to keep their property safe. It can help some lower the amount of property damage. It also can make recovery efforts happen faster after a disaster.

For instance, people in low-lying areas may want to think about raising their home to stop flood damage. They may be able to get federal and state funds to help offset the costs. To find out if you qualify, contact the local emergency management office.

In fact, floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. Yet, homeowners insurance will not cover flood losses. A flood insurance policy is the best way to recover from a flood. Homeowners can buy flood insurance no matter where they live: high, low or moderate risk areas. Policies are available for residential buildings and commercial buildings as long as the community joins in the National Flood Insurance Program. There is also separate contents coverage, so renters can get flood insurance too.

Your local government is the first line of defense for people when recovering from natural hazards no matter the type of damage. Talk to your local emergency management coordinator if you want to lower damage to your property in future disasters.

For Communities

For communities, prevention planning can help save lives and property, speed recovery efforts after disasters, and get pre-disaster and post-disaster grant funding faster. The idea is by investing today in good prevention practices, individuals and communities can save money in the long run by lowering funds needed for emergency recovery, repair and rebuilding.

A good prevention plan can help break the cycle of damage and loss during disasters. By lowering the possibility of damage, it helps people, businesses and industries begin again faster after a disaster. It gets the local economy moving again. Good prevention planning also helps to keep open spaces, uphold environmental health and grow recreational activities.

Local governments that want to get prevention grants must create an approved local hazard prevention plan according to state and federal rules. Only areas with adopted prevention plans may get existing prevention funds.

To talk over your local hazard prevention plan, contact NCEM’s Hazard Mitigation section at 919-825-2301.

For Regions

A regional hazard mitigation plan combines the prevention plans of a number of counties and their towns/cities into one plan. These jurisdictions work together during the planning process to make a common plan based on their risk to like dangers. This can save time and resources for everyone involved. It also makes it easier to update the plan.

Developing a regional prevention plan provides several benefits, including:

  • Cost savings as many governments pool resources to create and update the plan. Also, when applying for projects, many towns/cities can join together to share the related matching funds.
  • Better organization and less work for local towns'/cities'' planning departments.
  • Funding priority. NCEM sees that regional plans have more benefits and will rank those application, raising a group's chances of getting a planning grant.
  • Maintaining local control. Town/cities keep their rights to apply as a local community to FEMA for funding.

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