U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Apr 07, 2020

§ 63.17 - Procedures and data requirements for imminent collapse certifications by States.

Any State that has been determined to be eligible by the Federal Insurance Administrator may certify that a coastal structure is subject to imminent collapse. Such certification requires that the State collect scientific or technical information relative to the structure and its site and provide such information to the insured to be filed with a claim for insurance benefits under Section 1306 of the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, as amended. The information which is provided to the insured shall include, but is not limited to, the following:

(a) Certification from the State agency that the structure is subject to imminent collapse. The certification shall cite the property address, legal description (e.g., lot, block), the date of application for certification, and the date of and basis for the certification, and

(b) Supporting scientific and technical data to substantiate the certification consisting of the following:

(1) Photographs of the structure in relation to the obvious peril. All photographs should be labeled with the location, direction, date and time from which they were taken. The collection of photographs should adequately display the following:

(i) Any evidence of existing damage. The damage can include loss or erosion of soil near or around the foundation, or structural damage to the foundation components.

(ii) Structure and waterbody. These photographs shall show both the structure and the waterbody that presents the peril. If the structure is on a high bluff or dune and not accessible from the water side, the top edge of the bluff or dune will be sufficient. These will usually be taken from one or both sides of the structure.

(iii) Physical reference features used in the measurements discussed below. The reference feature shall be in or near the area affected by normal tides, when applicable. If a reference is not clearly distinguishable on the photograph, it should be annotated to identify the feature. If possible, all reference features described below should be photographed showing their relationship to the site of the threatened structure.

(2) Identification and selection of reference features. The following reference features are presented according to priority. If the first feature is not present, the next feature shall be located and photographed, and so forth.

(i) Top edge of bluff (cliff top).

(ii) Top edge of escarpment on an eroding dune (i.e., a nearly vertical erosional cut at the seaward face of the dune). The normal high tide should be near the toe of the dune and there should be indications that the dune is actively eroding.

(iii) The normal high tide limit may be indicated by one of the following:

(A) Vegetation line (the seaward most edge of permanent vegetation).

(B) Beach scarp (erosion line on beach, usually a sharp, nearly vertical drop of 0.5 to 3.0 feet at the upper limit of high tide).

(C) Debris line deposited by the normal high tide, not by a recent storm.

(D) Upper limit of wet sand.

(3) Distance measurements from the threatened structure to the nearest points on the reference features. These measurements should be taken from all photographed reference features to the closest point on the supporting foundation. For purposes of making this measurement, decks, stairs, and other exterior attachments that do not contribute to the structural support of the building are not considered part of the structure. The measurements shall be taken horizontally with a tape and recorded to the nearest foot. The date and time of the measurement shall be noted. The location of the measurements (i.e., reference feature and closest structural member) shall be identified on the appropriate photograph or sketch of the site. If some or all of the reference features coincide, this shall also be noted and identified on the photographs. Reference features landward of the structure need not be measured, but shall be noted on the photographs.

(4) A determination of the average annual erosion rate at the site and a copy of the pertinent section of the reference document used to obtain the annual erosion rate at the site.

(5) Copy of the effective Flood Insurance Rate Map panel annotated with the location of the threatened structure.

(6) In the event that a structure is not situated within a “zone of imminent collapse” using the criteria and procedures in paragraphs (b) (1) through (5) of this section, then the State may submit other scientific and technical data, in addition to the information described in paragraphs (b) (1) through (5) of this section, that would reveal unusual erosive or stability conditions at the site. Such data must include engineering analyses or reports performed on the structure or site which evaluates local rates of erosion, or the condition or stability of the structure's foundation including supporting soil.

(c) In the case of structures planned to be relocated, a certification as to whether the proposed relocation site is outside the 30-year setback for 1-4 family residential structures, or outside the 60-year setback for all other structures, must also be submitted by the State.

[53 FR 36975, Sept. 23, 1988, as amended at 53 FR 44193, Nov. 2, 1988]