Flood Prevention the Goal in Burlington Pilot Project
A pilot project is being announced - on the third anniversary of a devastating storm which damaged more than 3,000 homes, roads, and highways across the city - to help Burlington homeowners protect their properties from flooding.
Burlington received a record 191 millimetres of rain in just eight hours on Aug. 4, 2014, and “the Burlington Community Foundation, city and regional officials, and our entire community immediately came together to help residents receive the support they desperately needed,” said Burlington MPP Eleanor McMahon.
“One of the lessons that emerged from the 2014 flood was the desire, on the part of homeowners, to invest in initiatives that would empower them with the tools and upgrades they can invest in to enhance the value of their homes and guard against the impacts of severe weather events.”
The University of Waterloo, province of Ontario and City of Burlington announced the launch of the Home Flood Protection Program at City Hall on Friday.
The program aims to help homeowners identify flood risks, take action to reduce those risks and support preventative maintenance activities that reduce risks over the long-term.
This is achieved via a trained assessor who completes a 50-point visual assessment of potential sources of water entry into the home and discusses preventative maintenance practices with homeowners.
A confidential report is created to provide homeowners with a list of the top actions to reduce flood risk.
The pilot program is available for single-family homeowners for a subsidized fee of $125 across Burlington from August to December 2017.
Lessons learned from the pilot program in Burlington will inform a broader rollout of the program across Ontario.
Homeowners who are interested in participating can register online or call 1-877-876-9235.
"As severe rain events become the new normal, initiatives such the Home Flood Protection Program remind us that although we cannot predict the weather, we can prepare for it,” said head of the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation Dr. Blair Feltmate.
“Taking the time to understand your home's unique risks and learning about what actions you can take today to reduce those risks is the most cost-effective and efficient way for a homeowner to invest in flood protection."
DID YOU KNOW?
- Roughly 272 approved claims totalling $2.7 million were finalized for 2014 victims on June 30, 2015.
- Flood-related water damage is the number one cause of household insurance claims in Ontario, according to the city, and the average cost of a flooded basement in the Greater Toronto Area is $40,000.
Photo courtesy of the City of Burlington