ST. THOMAS, USVI -- Many Virgin Island residents remain without flood insurance because their home or business has not been flooded yet. However, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials advise that citizens do not need to live in a mapped floodplain, to need flood insurance.
"National Flood Insurance rates in mapped floodplains are already extremely affordable, but our Preferred Risk rates can be a real bargain-annual premiums start at $119 for building and contents coverage," said FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer Philip Parr. "And statistics show that over one quarter of all claims paid by the NFIP are for policies in low- or moderate-risk communities."
A home can be covered up to $250,000 for the dwelling and $100,000 for contents. Replacement cost coverage is available for single-family, primary residences. Renters can purchase insurance for contents only. Business owners are also eligible for Preferred Risk Flood Insurance. Commercial premiums start at $550 per year for the building or $145 per year for contents only. Non-residential coverage can be purchased for up to $500,000 for the dwelling and $500,000 for the contents.
For more information, call 1-800-427-4661, or visit: www.floodsmart.gov. At the Web site you can enter your home or business address to view your flood-risk level and find an insurance agent near you who sells NFIP policies.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards