Protective Barriers For Levees and Floodwalls

Floods March 23, 2012 Print Friendly and PDF


Local zoning and codes may restrict the use of levees and floodwalls because they may create flooding and water problems for nearby properties. Check with local officials about zoning and code regulations.

Levees and floodwalls need to be built at least a foot higher than the base flood elevation, and strong enough to withstand the pressure of floodwaters and wave and current action.

Typically, a levee is less than 6 feet high and made of earth. It serves as a protective barrier around the house. A floodwall is usually made of masonry and concrete and is 4 feet or less in height. Floodwalls must be strong and reinforced to withstand the wave and current action and the pressure of floodwaters.

See also Floods: Water-Inflated Barriers, Floods: Water-Inflated Barriers, Floods: Closures for Flood Protection, and Floods: Water Against a Building.

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