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Recent wind and rain storm a severe reminder for flood insurance especially in wildfire damaged areas

January 20, 2021

Salem — Last week’s flash flooding is a severe reminder to consider flood insurance, especially in wildfire damaged areas.

Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States. Just one inch of water can cause more than $25,000 in damage to your home.

The Labor Day wildfires left much of the Willamette Valley and southern Oregon prone to flash flooding after the fires burned up the vegetation that absorbs rainwater and holds soil in place.

A typical homeowners or renters policy does not cover flood damage. Oregonians can purchase coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and a few private insurers. There is a 30-day waiting period.

“Our hearts go out to all of the Oregonians affected by the recent storms, and we are urging everyone in or near wildfire damaged areas to consider buying flood insurance,” said Oregon Insurance Commissioner and Department of Consumer and Business Services Director, Andrew Stolfi. “Unfortunately, it will take years for the vegetation to recover from these wildfires, making these areas prone to flash flooding for the foreseeable future.”

All Oregonians, especially those who live in or near wildfire damaged areas, are encouraged to visit or contact their insurance agent to ask about flood insurance.

To learn more about how insurance covers damage from different types of storms, visit the Division of Financial Regulation’s storm damage page.

If you have questions about your insurance, contact your insurance company or agent for more information. If you still have questions or concerns, the division’s consumer advocates are here to help. Oregonians can contact the division’s advocates three ways:


About DCBS: The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, visit  

About Oregon DFR: The Division of Financial Regulation is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. Visit and .

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Jason Horton