(MANKATO, Minn) - FEMA visited Blue Earth County Wednesday to bring awareness about flooding and what it can mean for your property.
 
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is providing residents an opportunity to review preliminary insurance maps to protect their homes in the case of a flood and give potential input.

The maps highlight high-risk areas for flooding but officials say that nearly one-fifth of insurance claims are made outside of those zones.
 
"Flood waters don't read maps. Due to a log jam or an ice jam, bridge goes out, flood waters can certainly change and go into areas that hadn't historically been flooded." said Blue Earth County Zoning Administrator George Leary.
 
FEMA says once the preliminary maps are finalized, they will be used to determine insurance rates.

The agency highly recommends buying flood insurance as it is a much better safety net than any potential federal disaster relief.
 
"We're here to share these maps with the public to let them know where the risk lies and if their house is at risk," said FEMA Outreach Specialist Laurie Smith-Kuypers. "We want to make people understand that where it rains, it floods. Even if they're protected by a levy or a dam, or they think they're not a risk, we've seen lately with the intensity of all these storms that it does flood."
 
If you missed Wednesday's open house, another one will be held Thursday at the Nicollet County government center between 5 and 7 PM.

FEMA's preliminary maps are also available online.

----KEYC News 12