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Water - Frequently Asked Stormwater and Floodplain Questions

  1. How do I determine if I live in a floodplain?
  2. Who do I contact to report a drainage or flooding problem?
  3. Where can I get information about Flood Insurance Requirements?
  4. Who is responsible for maintaining drainage facilities?
  5. Is there an Elevation Certificate on File for my House?
  6. How about the quality of our water?
  7. What is a 100 Year Storm?
  8. Where can I obtain sandbags for flood proofing?

1. How do I determine if I live in a floodplain?

To request a flood hazard determination: Call Records Department at 480-312-2356; or FAX a copy of a Flood Hazard Determination Form (FHDF) to 480-312-7012.

For specific questions about zone restrictions, elevation certificates, etc. in Scottsdale:  Call 480-312-7696 or FAX to 480-312-4000 or email to drainage@scottsdaleaz.gov

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2.Who do I contact to report a drainage or flooding problem? For emergency street flooding: call Emergency Hotline at 480-312-2335.
  • If a drainage facility is in need of maintenance: call Field Services at 480-312-5640
  • If there is a drainage problem around your home, see the: "Homeowner's Guide to Drainage" (PDF: 985KB/8pp)
  • If there is chronic street ponding: call Street Maintenance at 480-312-5639
  • For new home/private development ongoing construction: call Inspection Services at 480-312-5750
  • For City construction projects: call Capital Project Management at 480-312-7250
  • Floodplain and Stormwater Ordinance requirements: Existing or planned flood control projects: Call 480-312-7696 or FAX to 480-312-4000 or email to drainage@scottsdaleaz.gov
  • For the Mosquito Hotline (24 hours): call Maricopa County Health Department at 602-244-9245
  • For flooding in the Phoenix city limits: call 602-262-6441
  • For flooding within Maricopa County: call 602-506-1501

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3.

 Where can I get information about Flood Insurance Requirements?
  • Scottsdale participates in the National Flood Insurance Program, therefore, coverage is available to owners and renters of insurable property (buildings and/or its contents). For more information call Scottsdale's Floodplain and Stormwater Management staff at 480-312-7696 or send a fax to 480-312-4000, or send e-mail to drainage@scottsdaleaz.gov
  • Flood insurance may be purchased from any licensed property insurance agent or broker, i.e. most local insurance agents.
  • The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is administered nationally by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). For more information on FEMA and the NFIP click hereleavingcos.gif (62 bytes).

To ask questions about flooding or obtain a copy of any of the following publications, call Records at 480-312-2356 or fax your request to 480-312-7011:

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4. Who is responsible for maintaining drainage facilities?

  • The maintenance of drainage facilities in Scottsdale is generally the responsibility of the individual homeowner or the homeowner's association, even if the facility is located within a drainage easement dedicated to the city.
  • The city and the Flood Control District of Maricopa County maintain certain selected facilities within the city limits, usually larger regional flood control facilities.
  • For information about a facility at a specific location contact: Field Services at 480-312-5460 or Floodplain and Stormwater Management at 480-312-7696

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5. Is there an Elevation Certificate on File for my House?

  • If your house was built after 1990 the city should have an Elevation Certificate on file. If your house was built prior to 1989, a certificate probably does not exist unless you or a previous owner had one prepared. If your house was built in 1989 or 1990, there may be a certificate on file with the city. Call the Records Division at 480-312-2356.
  • If there isn't a certificate on file, you will have to hire a registered land surveyor to prepare one for you. If you are located in an AO flood hazard zone, the home owner can prepare their own. For more information or a copy of a blank form, call Floodplain and Stormwater Management at 480-312-7696.

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6. How about the quality of our water?

  • Drinking water quality - Scottsdale Water Resources Department, call 480-312-5616
  • Surface Water Quality Hotline - AZ Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), call 602-207-4501
  • Complaints regarding rivers, lakes and streams - ADEQ, call 602-207-4506
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 9, call 415-744-1305

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7. What is a 100 Year Storm?

  • To understand how a 100-year storm event is calculated, you need to first understand the concept of a watershed. A watershed is an area in which water drains to one location or point of accumulation. On land, water that does not evaporate or soak into the soil usually drains into ditches, streams, washes or lakes. The land area from which the water drains is called a watershed. When you were a small child, you may have had a favorite mud puddle in which you liked to play. The part of the yard from which the water drained into the puddle was its watershed.
  • For a 100-year storm to occur, all portions of a watershed must receive 3.4 inches of rainfall within 6 hours.
  • In central Arizona, there are generally two times each year when heavy rainstorms occur. The summer monsoon seasons are typically stronger and can produce large amounts of rainfall in short periods of time. The summer monsoons are smaller storm systems but could produce 100-year storm events within watersheds of 1 to 10 square miles. The winter storms, on the other hand, are larger in area and longer in duration. If enough rainfall occurred, these winter storms could produce 100-year storm events within larger watersheds.

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8. Where can I obtain sandbags for flood proofing?

To obtain sandbags for containing stormwater, call 312-5620 during normal business hours 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM. If an emergency situation, call the Police Department after hours number 312-5000.
Sandbags are usually available filled, however, citizens can obtain bags and sand and fill bags themselves.
Go to the Corporation Yard, turn south near the Guard House at 9191 E. San Salvador. Major cross streets are Via Linda and 91st Street.