— Engineers flush out a new software version for flood damage insurance, a sign that the U.S. government is working on updating flood-related software for the first time in 20 years.
The software update, known as the Flood Insurance Service (FIS), will allow insurers to track and pay claims against flood-damaged properties more accurately, said Jim Gaudreau, vice president of operations at Flood Insurance.
Flood damage claims are based on the risk of flood damage and the potential for flood, he said.
The flood insurance program for homeowners, renters and small businesses in the region has long been a priority for the federal government.
Since its inception in 1978, the FIS has allowed homeowners to recover damages from their flood-prone properties through the federal insurance program.
In the last few years, Congress has passed a flood-control bill that makes it easier for homeowners to sue for flood damages and more aggressive flood insurance claims.
The legislation also allows homeowners to collect a higher share of the value of damage claims, Gaudoupier said.
Gaudreau said the flood insurance industry is already using the software to update the code for flood protection systems, such as flood doors and flood pumps, and for flood mitigation systems such as water mains and drainage pipes.
The FIS is a big deal because flood insurance policies now have to include flood-proofing.
The new software is designed to provide that same level of coverage.
It is one of the most complex and expensive flood-protection systems in the world, Gartreau said.
He said the software update was completed last week and the Fis is available for customers to download.
Flood insurance is a common business benefit that helps homeowners recover damages to their homes from floods and other hazards.