Information & Outreach

Surface Water Management (SWM) partners with the Public Works Road Maintenance and Solid Waste divisions, the Department of Emergency Management, Planning and Development Services, and the Sheriff's Office to:

  • Increase general awareness of flood hazards,
  • Help residents and businesses prepare for flood events, 
  • Offer technical assistance with flood protection measures, and
  • Respond to flood emergencies.

Real-Time Flood Information 

Snohomish County maintains a series of precipitation and water level gauges that constantly monitor rainfall totals, river levels and flood status within the county and surrounding areas. You can view this information on the Real-Time Flood Information System website, which is updated every 15 minutes.

Flood Safety and Preparedness

Nearly 8,500 households are located within the 100-year floodplains of unincorporated Snohomish County. Every fall, at the start of "flood season," the county mails its Flood Safety Guide to all of these households. The guide provides up-to-date information, emergency contacts and tips on how residents can reduce their flood risks, prepare for flooding and stay safe during and after a flood event.

You can view the Flood Safety Guide (PDF) online or pick up a printed copy at the following locations:

  • Information kiosks on the first floor of county administration buildings in Everett
  • The county offices of Surface Water Management, Emergency Management, or Planning and Development Services
  • Some city halls and public libraries near flood-prone areas (call to check)

Outreach to Residents in Frequently Flooded Areas

The county uses claim information from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to locate "repetitive loss properties" in unincorporated Snohomish County. A repetitive loss property is an NFIP-insured structure that has had at least two paid flood losses of more than $1,000 each in any 10-year period since 1978.

Concentrations of repetitive loss properties are known as "repetitive loss areas." Each year, SWM sends a letter (PDF) to homeowners in these areas, highlighting steps they can take to reduce their flood risks and better protect their properties from flood damage.

Outreach to Realtors, Lenders & Insurance Brokers

SWM also sends a letter (PDF) annually to local realtors, lenders, and insurers that provides information on Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood hazard maps and related insurance requirements. Under federal law, anyone seeking a federally-backed mortgage, grant or other type of financial assistance for the purchase and/or construction of a building within a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) must purchase flood insurance.

See the FEMA Flood map Service Center for additional information on flood hazard mapping, including guidance on how to view and obtain flood hazard maps for specific locations.