FortLauderdale.gov

City News

Print

King Tides Nov. 24 - 27

Post Date:11/10/2015 8:10 AM

Flooding in low-lying areas is more likely when the close proximity of the moon, high tides, rising sea levels and inclement weather conditions combine to exacerbate flooding risks.  As a beautiful coastal community with 300 miles of canal coastline and numerous low-lying areas, Fort Lauderdale neighbors are advised to be especially vigilant during the upcoming “King Tides,” from November 24 to 27, 2015. 

We are sharing this information to inform our neighbors and encourage them to prepare for potential tidal flooding.  Please take the time to evaluate your property's readiness, review your insurance policy, create an emergency plan and read the tips below. The City’s website also provides a wealth of information on tides, flood prevention activities and what the City is doing to increase Fort Lauderdale’s Climate Resiliency. View the sanitation service page for tips during inclement weather. 

The location and natural geography of the City makes certain neighborhoods more susceptible to flooding from high tides and extreme rainfall.  Fortunately, the City and the region are actively planning for events like these in the short term and for sea level rise concerns in the long term.  The City has a robust stormwater master plan and is instituting both aggressive maintenance and innovative adaptation solutions such as tidal valves.  Since 2011, more than 59 tidal valves have been installed in affected neighborhoods to reduce the impacts of high tides in those locations.  Storm drains and catch basins are regularly cleaned and maintained to minimize potential flooding. In addition, the City has worked hard to earn points toward the Community Rating System resulting in a 20% discount for flood insurance premiums within the City.

Stay Safe

  • Do not walk through flood waters. It is dangerous and can be a health hazard.                                
  • Do not drive through flooded areas, turn around and find another way. In addition to being a threat to life safety, the salt water can lead to both short and long term damage to your vehicle.
  • If you drive through flooded areas, please note that creating waves can cause additional damage to surrounding landscaping and property.
  • Be careful around manhole covers, as they can become dislodged by the high tides.  
  • Boaters are advised that high tides cause lower clearance under fixed bridges. Check the tides before leaving the dock.

Know Your Flood Hazard

Insure Your Property

  • Homeowner and renter insurance policies usually do not cover flood damage.  The City of Fort Lauderdale encourages neighbors who rent or own property in a Special Flood Hazard Area to purchase flood insurance to protect their home and possessions against loss from flood damage.  

Protect Your Property

  • Neighbors that drive through tidally flooded streets should consider taking their vehicles through a car wash equipped with an undercarriage sprayer to remove the saltwater.
  • The City responds to flood protection inquiries. If you have a question regarding flood, sewer or drainage problems, contact the City of Fort Lauderdale’s 24-Hour Customer Service Center at 954-828-8000. 

Build Responsibly

  • Prior to starting any construction, residents or builders should contact the City’s Department of Sustainable Development at 954-828-6520 to ask about required permits.
  • Protect natural floodplain functions State law prohibits dumping anything into the storm drain system and unauthorized obstructions or alterations of the drainage features. Residents should report illegal dumping into the stormwater system or clogged storm drains by calling the City of Fort Lauderdale 24-Hour Customer Service Center at 954-828-8000. 

Protect Natural Floodplain Functions

  • State law prohibits dumping anything into the storm drain system and unauthorized obstructions or alterations of the drainage features. Residents should report illegal dumping into the stormwater system or clogged storm drains by calling the City of Fort Lauderdale 24-Hour Customer Service Center at 954-828-8000. 

Sanitation Service Tips  

High Tide Table

Date

Day

Time

Predicted Height above MLLW (ft)

11/24/2015

Tue

7:10 AM

2.9

11/24/2015

Tue

7:21 PM

2.8

11/25/2015

Wed

8:01 AM

3

11/25/2015

Wed

8:12 PM

2.8

11/26/2015

Thu

8:51 AM

3

11/26/2015

Thu

9:01 PM

2.8

11/27/2015

Fri

9:39 AM

2.9

 

What is a Tide?

The word “tide” is a generic term used to define the rise and fall of sea level with respect to land. Tides are influenced by the gravitational attraction of the moon and sun. In addition, tides are affected by other factors such as: coastline configuration, local water depth, wind, and weather conditions. Twice a day, tides peak to a high and low water level, commonly referred to as “high tide” and “low tide.”

Knowledge of the tide times and predicted heights are important to various applications such as: emergency preparedness; maritime navigation; the construction of bridges, docks, and seawalls; and the operation of wastewater and storm water collection systems. Tide information is indispensable to the fishing, boating, surfing, and other water-related industries. Currently, this information is critical to understanding flooding which impacts the City during weather events, particularly in low-lying areas.

Tide Predictions

Tide predictions can differ from the actual sea level rise or fall that occurs. Predicted tidal heights are those expected during average weather conditions. When weather conditions differ from what is considered average, water levels can be significantly altered. Generally, prolonged onshore winds (wind towards the land) or low barometric pressure can produce higher sea levels than predicted, while offshore winds (wind away from the land) and high barometric pressure can result in lower sea levels than predicted.

High tides are produced from the flow of water toward positions on Earth where the gravitational forces of the sun and moon are the strongest. Low tides are created at a point midway between the two positions. The alternating between high and low tides is caused by the daily rotation of the Earth. There are peak high tides in each month. Typically the City of Fort Lauderdale experiences its highest tides during the months of September, October, and November.

These high tides may cause ocean and canal waters to rise above elevations of land, including streets and seawalls in low-lying areas of Fort Lauderdale and throughout South Florida, thus causing tidal flooding of those areas.

The City’s installation of more than 50 tidal valves in flood prone neighborhoods to date has reduced the impact of high tides in those locations. Onshore winds can exacerbate coastal flooding and concurrent rain events may increase incidences of flooding further inland as the high tides impede drainage.

In addition, to reduce flooding from tides and rains, the City is currently implementing its Stormwater Master Plan to improve system operation and reduce flooding incidence through means including additional one-way tidal valves, TIger Dams, sand berms, bioswales, pervious pavers, stormwater preserves, improved pumping stations, and seawall repairs.

Useful Resources 

The City website provides detailed information about flooding including flood zonesmitigation, safety and protection measures. The site includes links to useful guides, maps and resources from the City, Broward County, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and other organizations.

Neighbors may visit the following links for additional information:

Federal Emergency Management Agency

Flood Smart

Flood Protection Flyer

Request a Property Flood Zone Determination Letter

Tide Table

Neighbors may contact the City’s 24-Hour Customer Service Center at 954-828-8000 with questions or concerns or to report incidents of flooding.

Customer Service may also be reached via LauderServ, the City’s mobile application.  For more information about LauderServ or to download the mobile application, please visit www.fortlauderdale.gov/lauderserv.


Return to full list >>