Community Rating System


This information is being sent to you as a part of the requirements to give public information in the event of a flood emergency by the Borough of Ship Bottom. Our municipality is located in the 100-year floodplain and additionally located entirely in what FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) labeled a special flood hazard area. A map depicting this information is available for perusal at Borough of Ship Bottom Construction Office, 1621 Long Beach Blvd. and also at the Ocean County Public Library located in Surf City. The purpose of this notification is to inform you of the flood hazard associated with this area and suggest possible actions you can take to protect yourself and your property. This notice is not intended to frighten, but to inform the public. If you rent your property, please provide a copy of this notice to your tenants.


The 100-year Floodplain is the area that will be flooded on the average od once every 100 years. It has 1% chance of being flooded in any given year. Put another way, it has about a 25% chance of being flooded over the life of a 30-year mortgage. Smaller floods have a greater chance of occurring in any way can still create a significant flood hazard to people and property. Also, larger floods can and do occur.


Ship Bottom has developed a warning system for all areas within the community, Warnings will be disseminated by sirens, radio (WJRZ-100.1 FM, 1160 AM), TV, Comcast Cable TV, weather radio and by police and fire vehicles equipped with public address systems. The flood warning system is intended to provide up to twenty-four hour advance warning of a flood emergency.


Since you received this information in the mail, you should be concerned about the flood hazard. There are several actions you can take to mitigate the flood hazard, including:

  1. Shut off the electric and gas service
  2. Plan early escape route to route 72 to higher ground. Route 72 is the only route out
  3. During times of heavy rainfall, monitor the level of water in the area. Stay tuned to radio or TV for possible flood watches and warnings
  4. Evacuate the flood hazard area in times of impending flood or when advised to do so by Police or Fire Department. It is for your safety!
  5. Do not attempt to cross a flooded are by foot or by car, it may be deeper than it appears
  6. If your car stalls in high water, abandon it immediately and seek higher ground
  7. Keep children away from flood waters, ditches, culverts and storm drains
  8. Be especially cautious at night

You may also call 361-1000 in Long Beach Township for storm and emergency updates.


The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created by Congress in 1968 to provide homeowners flood insurance at a reasonable cost. Keep in mind that standard homeowners policies do not cover flood losses. Depending on your coverage, location (flood hazard zone), and elevation of the structure, rates will vary. In the regular Federal Flood insurance Program, coverage of up to $250,000 is available for residential dwellings, and up to $100,000 is available for contents. There is a 30 day waiting period before coverage goes into effect. Flood Insurance is required by law for federally financed loans when buying or improving structures. Fore more information on flood information on flood insurance call 1-800-427-4661. National Flood Insurance Program website:


During an emergency certain measures can be taken to protect your property from serious damage. Board windows or use masking tape to keep breaking windows from shattering. Move all loose outside objects and furniture to an enclosure to secure them. These objects can become deadly projectiles in high wind. If you leave our home, turn off the electric and gas. Moving your furniture and personal objects to a second floor or lifting them off the floor will protect them from rising water.

If your property has had flood damage in the past and even if you have been fortunate enough to never have experienced a flood there are steps to take to give your house more protection in the future. Studies have shown that retrofitting (the practice of flood proofing, elevating, or otherwise modifying to protect from flood damage) can effectively reduce flood damage, especially from shallow, slow moving flooding. The best way to minimize flood damage is to raise your home so the lowest habitable floor is at or above your base flood elevation. Current cost estimates for this range from $250,000.00 to $35,000.00 and your flood insurance premiums could be significantly be reduced. The inexpensive cast task of installing flood vents in your home can also be obtained from several sources including the local building department, the Ocean County Library located in Surf City, The Floodplain Resource Center, Boulder Colorado (303)-492-6818 and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.


Certain permits are required for all types of development and improvements. Before making improvements to your home and property, contact the Construction Code Office at (609)-494-2171 Ext 106. You should contact the Construction Official can help guide you through the process for flood proofing and or raising your house.


The National Flood Insurance Program and the IRC and IBC adopted codes which your community complies with, I require that if the cost of reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition or other improvements to a building equals 50% of the buildings assessed value, then the building must meet the same construction requirements as a new building. Substantially damaged buildings must also be brought up to the same standards (e.g. a residence damaged so that the cost of repairs equals or exceed 50 of the buildings assessed value before it was damaged must be elevated above the base flood elevation). This requirement is enforced by the Local Construction Code Official.


Strict enforcement of the local Codes is crucial to maintain the family atmosphere we pride ourselves on. As a part of this, it is important to maintain our storm drainage system in order to keep storm water flowing freely through them. Ship Bottom has a drainage system maintenance program and any other major blockage should be reported to the Borough Hall, (609)-494-2171. Additionally, the Borough has adopted and enforces regulations that prohibit the illegal dumping of material to the storm drain system. Do not sweep trash or yard clippings into the system and do not dump chemicals into the storm drains. Violators should be reported to the Ship Bottom Police Department at (609)-494-1518 immediately.


Long Beach Island is considered a barrier island approximately one mile off the southern coast of New Jersey. In that context it is viewed as a barrier between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mainland, meaning that the Island will be sacrificed to protect the Mainland and those inhabitants and their property. Like most barrier islands along the eastern seaboard, the land slopes from a high elevation in the ocean-side dune area, 16-20 feet above mean sea level to an elevation of 3-4 feet bayside. The Borough is prone to flooding from hurricanes, tropical storms and nor’easters. The dunes are our first line of defense against the onslaught of the high incoming seas resulting from these storms. Beach dunes are the most important natural protection we have against the ocean. The dunes functionally serve to prevent the ocean from reaching property. Without the dunes, property would be subjected to frequent flooding and or total destruction. Is it important to remember this and protect the dunes. Preserving the dunes is of the utmost importance. The Borough maintains strict standards for dune restoration and preservation. Homeowners in this area are encouraged to erect dune fences, which help build up dunes, and to plant dune grass which stabilizes them. Local, State and Federal building codes have since been established to protect the dunes, which in turn protect lives and property. The Borough of Ship Bottom Municipal Code Section 12.12.070 restricts access to the beach and Section 16.72.010 prohibits construction in beach dune areas and restricts removal of sand within the beach-dune area. The local building office can provide more information about laws which protect the dunes.


Additional information and or materials concerning the above topics is available from the Ocean County Library located in Surf City at 217 S. Central Avenue, Surf City, NJ, 08008. Other sources of information are: Ship Bottom Building Department (609)-494-2171 Ext. 106, The Floodplain Management Resource Center (303)-492-6818 HAZCRT@COLORADO.EDU, the Federal Emergency Management Agency 1-(800)-638-6620 or your community National Flood Insurance Program Coordinator in Ship Bottom (609)-494-2171 Ext. 106. Borough staff is available to undertake site visits, if requested, to review flood, drainage and sewer issues. Call the Borough Hall at (609)-494-2171.