NFIP Technical Bulletins
Since 1993, the FEMA Technical Bulletins have provided guidance for complying with the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP) floodplain management requirements for reducing flood losses. It has been nearly 10 years since the most recent Technical Bulletin was published, and FEMA is in the process of updating them. FEMA is planning to release the updated Technical Bulletins throughout 2019 and 2020.
In the past two and a half decades since the first Technical Bulletin was published, disaster resistant codes and standards, guidance, and best practices have improved significantly. As a result, the Technical Bulletins are being modernized so they can continue to provide a valuable resource to those responsible for interpreting and enforcing NFIP regulations. The updates will incorporate the most up-to-date guidance and references and address issues with the current Technical Bulletins identified over time. These updates will improve the Technical Bulletins’ credibility and content with input from a wide range subject matter experts, users, and other stakeholders.
One focus of the update effort is ensuring the information is streamlined and presented in a consistent fashion to improve usability. The updated Technical Bulletins will incorporate information and references from the most recent consensus codes and standards, cross referencing the 2018 I-Codes and ASCE 24-14 standard where appropriate. The updated format will also feature refreshed tables, figures, technical drawings, and photos. The updates will provide State and local officials, design professionals, builders, insurance agents, and homeowners clear and concise information in a modern format.
The updated outline for the Technical Bulletins is:
- Section 1 introduces the subject and purpose;
- Section 2 references and provides information related to the applicable NFIP Regulations;
- Section 3 presents and compares applicable codes and standards with NFIP Regulations;
- Section 4 provides information on NFIP flood insurance rates;
- Following Sections contain guidance, best practices, and other subject-specific content;
- References & Resources lists references and other useful subject-specific resources.
Technical Bulletins convey complex programmatic and technical information so updating them can be a lengthy process. The first Technical Bulletins to be updated will be Technical Bulletins 0, 4, and 8, which are expected to be completed and made available online in mid-2019. They will be followed shortly by updates to Technical Bulletins 1, 5, and 10. Updates to the rest of the Technical Bulletins are planned for 2020.
Visit FEMA’s Technical Bulletin website at https://www.fema.gov/nfip-technical-bulletins to access the Technical Bulletins and sign up for GovDelivery to stay informed. If you are interested in learning more about the updates to the Technical Bulletins, reach out to FEMA’s Building Science Branch at FEMA-Buildingsciencehelp@fema.dhs.gov or call the Building Science Helpline at (866) 927-2104.