Flood Protection

An image depicting the start page of the Georgetown County Forerunner website. Opens in new window
For flood zone information and elevation certificates, please visit our new Forerunner interactive mapping portal by clicking the image above.

DISCLAIMER: This software was developed for unincorporated Georgetown County and reflects information compiled by Georgetown County Departments regarding flood zones and associated hazards.  The information contained herein is for the unincorporated areas of Georgetown County and may not necessarily conform to or reflect the relevant information or standards for the City of Georgetown, Town of Pawleys Island, and Town of Andrews.  Property owners of the incorporated areas within Georgetown County are advised to contact those municipalities directly for further flood related information.  Neither the information provided by this service, nor any reliance thereon, shall operate to create any warranty or duty on behalf of Georgetown County or Forerunner, and neither Georgetown County nor Forerunner assume any liability or responsibility for damages which may arise in relation to or reliance on the information obtained through this online service.

For an introduction and overview of Forerunner, click here: https://www.withforerunner.com

Natural & Beneficial Functions of Local Floodplains

Floodplains and adjacent waters form a complex physical and biological system that can benefit both human and natural systems.  These benefits include helping to reduce the severity of floods, help handle stormwater runoff, and even filter out sediments and impurities from the floodwaters for better water quality.  The natural process of what the floodplains do for our community cost far less than building flood, stormwater, and water quality facilities.  Plus these floodplain areas throughout Georgetown County, can even serve recreational functions as well.

Natural Flood and Erosion Control

Over the centuries, floodplains throughout Georgetown County have developed their own ways of handling flooding and erosion with natural features that provide floodwater storage and conveyance, reducing flood velocities and flood peaks, and helping to curb sedimentation.  Natural controls on flooding and erosion help to maintain water quality by filtering nutrients and impurities from runoff, processing organic wastes and moderating temperature fluctuations.  These natural controls also contribute to recharging groundwater by promoting infiltration and refreshing Georgetown County’s aquifers, and by reducing the frequency and duration of low surface flows.

Biologic Resources and Functions

Floodplains enhance biological productivity by supporting a high rate of plant growth.  This helps to maintain biodiversity and the integrity of ecosystems.  Floodplains provide excellent habitats for fish and wildlife by serving as breeding and feeding grounds.  They also create and enhance waterfowl habitats, and help to protect habitats for rare and endangered species.

Societal Resources and Functions

People benefit from floodplains through the food they provide, the recreational opportunities they afford and the scientific knowledge gained in studying them.

Wild and cultivated products are harvested in floodplains, which are enhanced agricultural land made rich by sediment deposits.  They provide open space, which may be used to restore and enhance forest lands, or for recreational opportunities or simple enjoyment of their aesthetic beauty.

Floodplains provide areas for scientific study and outdoor education.  They contain cultural resources such as historic or archaeological sites, and thus provide opportunities for environmental and other kinds of studies.

Floodplains can increase a community’s overall quality of life, a role that often has been undervalued.  By transforming floodplains from problem areas into value-added assets, the community can improve its quality of life.  Parks, bike paths, open spaces, wildlife conservation areas and aesthetic features are important to citizens.  Assets like these make the community more appealing to potential employers, investors, residents, property owners and tourists.

Elevation Certificates

An Elevation Certificate is a form used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide elevation information necessary to ensure compliance with community floodplain management ordinances and to support a request for a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA).  The Elevation Certificate is required by Georgetown County’s Flood Ordinance in order to properly rate post-FRIM (Flood Rate Insurance Map) buildings and obtain a building permit (if located in a SFHA).  The current expiration date for this elevation certificate form is November 30, 2022.

FEMA Elevation Certificate and Instructions (PDF)

To view digital copies of Elevation Certificates, click here.

Flood Newsletter

To read the latest Georgetown County Flood Newsletter, click here.

Helpful Links

Local Financial Institutions, Insurance and Real Estate Agencies

For a list of local banks, insurance and real estate agencies, click here.

Stream Gauges

Real-time river flood level data can be found by clicking this link: National Weather Service Advanced Hydologic Prediction Service

Flood Mitigation Info

Information on Flooding, Flood Mitigation, and Flood Insurance can be found at your local Georgetown County Library.  Or, you can access this information online by clicking here: Georgetown County Library Online Search

Simply enter the above key words into the online catalog for access to dozens of publications, research, and documents on flood hazards in our region.


Official site of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). https://www.floodsmart.gov/


Official site of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 
English Version:  https://www.fema.gov/ 
Spanish Version:  https://www.fema.gov/es 

FEMA Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting - Six ways to protect your home from flooding

Georgetown County Flood Maps

The current Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) can be viewed in four ways:

  1. In the office of the Building Department (129 Screven Street, Georgetown)
  2. Via the County GIS Server - https://georgetown.maps.arcgis.com/home/index.html
  3. Via the County's Flood Information page by Forerunner - https://georgetowncountysc.withforerunner.com/properties
  4. On the FEMA Map Service Center - https://msc.fema.gov/portal/home

South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD)

Find info about evacuation zones, emergency information, and even available state grants: http://www.scemd.org/

View the Georgetown County Hazard Mitigation Plan: Hazard Mitigation Plan (2019) (PDF)

Georgetown Emergency Operations Radio

Listen LIVE -  https://streema.com/radios/WGEO 

SC State Climatology Office


NOAA Digital Coast

Sea Level Rise Viewer
Coastal Exposure Mapper

Other Maps

Natural Area Open Space Map (PDF)
Official Zoning Map (Image)
Evacuation Zones Map (Image)

Drainage System Maintenance and Permitting

Georgetown County Land Disturbance Permit