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The City of Portland, Oregon

Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Ave, Suite 613, Portland, OR 97204

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It’s Flood Season in Portland


flooded house near Johnson CreekThis month we're recognizing the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Christmas Flood in Portland and around the state.  This weekend's weather forecast looks pretty nice, but it's still a good time to check on your emergency kit and plan for the winter weather ahead.

Here are some tips and resources about keeping your home, family, and yourself safe and prepared.  Follow more tips and stories at #floodready and #64flood


Be prepared

Stay informed

Stay safe

  • Don’t walk through flowing water. Drowning is the number one cause of flood deaths. Just six inches of flowing water can knock you off your feet and hazards can be hidden under the water. If you need to walk through water to get to safety, use a pole or stick to negotiate your way.
  • Don’t drive through a flooded area. More people drown in their cars than anywhere else in a flood. Flood waters can also damage your car.
  • Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. Electrical current travels through water and can be deadly. Report downed power lines to your power company.

Check your flood insurance

Consider how vulnerable your home is to flood damage by asking yourself these questions:

  • How would I pay for flood damage or for measures to reduce damage?
  • Do I have flood insurance?

You should know:

  • Homeowners insurance does not cover flooding. Over the course of a 30-year mortgage, a property in Portland’s 100-year floodplain has a 26% chance of being damaged by a flood. Flood insurance is available through your local insurance agent.
  • Portland is part of the National Flood Insurance Program, which makes it possible for Portland residents to purchase federally backed flood insurance. By purchasing flood insurance, you can protect yourself from significant losses. Talk to your insurance agent about your coverage, and also check to see if you have sewer backup insurance.
  • Even if you live outside the floodplain, consider having flood insurance coverage. More than 60% of the flood insurance claims are for properties outside of the mapped 100-year floodplain.
  • For more information visit these sites:

To find out if your property is in or near a floodplain call 503-823-6892 or visit (Type in an address and click the "search" button. When the property description comes up, float your cursor over the "Maps" tab and click on "Hazard" to see if your property is in or near a floodplain.)

Reduce your home’s risk of flood damage

If you live in a floodplain, consider making permanent changes to your home, like these, to reduce your flood risks:

  • Elevate your home
  • Elevate the belongings in your home that are at risk
  • Consider flood-proofing measures
  • Abandon your basement
  • Provide sewer back-flow prevention


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