Harvey County contains certain areas that are located within the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) as determined by the United States Federal Emergency Agency (FEMA). FEMA has published maps showing the SFHA within and around Harvey County. These maps can be accessed on the following website: http://msc.fema.gov/portal. Once on this webpage, please follow the directions on how to make and print out your own copy of a FIRMette, which is a full-scale section of a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) that you create yourself and shows the current SFHA boundaries in relation to any given property. The current Harvey County Flood Plain Maps were adopted Oct. 4, 2014. 

    Floodplain information through Geographic Information System available at http://www.harvey.kansasgis.com. Once you find your property, in the upper right hand corner is a tab for Map Layers. Check the FEMA Flood Hazard layer to view whether or not your home is in one of the SFHA areas of Harvey County. 

    Harvey County has been a member of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) since 1978, which means that property owners within the City can buy flood insurance. The flood insurance is backed by FEMA. Most homeowner insurance policies do not cover flood-related losses. Homeowners insurance excludes floods. Flood insurance is available through the National Flood Insurance Program. There is a 30 day waiting period before you can make a claim on Flood Insurance. 

    The attached are premium rates for all new and renewal Flood Insurance Policies as of Oct. 1, 2014. 
    Flood Insurance Affordability Act
            Facts about Flood Insurance
  • Any work done in a SFHA requires permitting from the State of Kansas -Department of Agriculture - Division of Water Resources as well as Harvey County. All building in SFHA must have prior approval before work begins. Please contact our office at 316.284.6940 to set up an appointment before conducting any dirt work or building in Harvey County. Failure to do so will result in penalties and could result in removal of construction.
  • Local Permits can be applied for at Harvey County Planning & Zoning Office, 800 Main, Newton, KS 67114. Call for an appointment at 316.284.6940. 
  • To report illegal floodplain development call the Planning and Zoning Office at 316-284-6940. 
  • Rules and Regulations for building in a floodplain. 
Harvey County is a Storm Ready Community. Harvey County continuously works to be proactive in case of emergencies. For more information see the Harvey County Emergency Response Plan http://www.harveycounty.com/departments/emergency-management/emergency-operations-plan.html. For floods and other disasters click on the basic plan. 
  • Mass alerts for Flooding is done through local media outlets including local news channels KSN, KAKE and KWCH. Social media outlets including Facebook and Twitter, as well as the First Responder Agencies. 
  • Each Dam in Harvey County has an emergency plan. Emergency plans are available from individual watersheds or the Division of Water Resources. 
  • When you are evacuating a flood area, Don't drive in flooded areas. Remember to "Turn Around, Don't Drown."
        Tips for Preparing for a Flood
  • Contact your local county geologist or county planning department to find out if your home is located in a flash-flood-prone area or landslide-prone area.
  • Learn about your community’s emergency plans, warning signals, evacuation routes and locations of emergency shelters.
  • Plan and practice a flood evacuation route with your family. Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to be the “family contact” in case your family is separated during a flood. Make sure everyone in your family has their contact information.
  • Post emergency phone numbers at every phone.
  • Inform local authorities about any special needs, i.e., elderly or bedridden people or anyone with a disability.
  • Identify potential home hazards and know how to secure or protect them before the flood strikes. Be prepared to turn off electrical power when there is standing water, fallen power lines or before you evacuate. Turn off gas and water supplies before you evacuate. Secure structurally unstable building materials.
  • Buy a fire extinguisher and make sure your family knows where it is and how to use it.
  • Buy and install sump pumps with back-up power.
  • Have a licensed electrician raise electric components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers and wiring) at least 12 inches above your home’s projected flood elevation.
  • For drains, toilets and other sewer connections, install backflow valves or plugs to prevent floodwaters from entering.
  • Anchor fuel tanks which can contaminate your basement if torn free. An unanchored tank outside can be swept downstream and damage other houses.
       During a Flood Watch or Warning
  • Gather your emergency supply kit and stay tuned to local radio or TV stations for updates.
  • Turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve if evacuation appears necessary.
  • Have your immunization records handy or be aware of your last tetanus shot, in case you receive a puncture wound or a wound becomes contaminated during the flood.
  • Fill bathtubs, sink and plastic soda bottles with clean water. Sanitize the sinks and tubs first by using bleach. Rinse and fill with clean water.
  • Bring outdoor possessions, such as lawn furniture, grills and trash cans inside or tie them down securely.
  • Fill your vehicle’s gas tank and make sure the emergency kit for your car is ready.
  • If no vehicle is available, make arrangements with friends or family for transportation.
  • Listen for disaster sirens and warning signals.
  • Put livestock and family pets in a safe area. Due to food and sanitation requirements, emergency shelters cannot accept animals.
  • Adjust the thermostat on refrigerators and freezers to the coolest possible temperature. 
       Evacuation Order
  • You should never ignore an evacuation order. Authorities will direct you to leave if you are in a low-lying area, or within the greatest potential path of the rising waters. If a flood warning is issued for your area or you are directed by authorities to evacuate the area:
  • Take only essential items with you.
  • If you have time, turn off the gas, electricity and water.
  • Disconnect appliances to prevent electrical shock when power is restored.
  • Follow the designated evacuation routes and expect heavy traffic.
  • Do not attempt to drive or walk across creeks or flooded roads.
        If You Are Ordered NOT to Evacuate
  • Monitor the radio or television for weather updates.
  • Prepare to evacuate to a shelter or to a neighbor’s home if your home is damaged, or if you are instructed to do so by emergency personnel.
You can help to protect your home from flooding with a few simple measures such as not having debris or trash in drainage areas and reporting dumping in a drainage area. Also by taking emergency floodproofing measures and retrofitting your buildings.  
As simple as it may sound, keeping smaller ditches and streams free of debris can dramatically improve the run-off capactiy of low lying areas, as well as greatly reduce the blockage which significantly contributes to flooding. It is illegal to dump materials into a required waterway and violators may be fined. If you see someone in the act of dumping or see debris in one of the County's watercourses, please contact the Planning and Zoning Office at 316.284.6940.     
Floodplains play a valuable role in providing natural and beneficial functions to Harvey County. Relative undisturbed floodplains provide both human and natural systems, including providing aesthetic pleasure and providing active processes such as filtering nutrients. Parts of both the Sand Creek and the Little Arkansas floodplains are used as a means to filter farm chemical run-off so that these areas can maintain bio-diversity and ecosystem sustainability. Both floodplains contain historic and archeological sites which provide opportunity for education and study. Both enhance waterfowl, fish and other wildlife habitats and provide feeding/breeding grounds. Finally, both floodplains provide natural erosion control and open space so further flood damage does not occur. 


For more information on floodplain management, please contact the Harvey County Planning, Zoning and Environmental Department staff.