For those who deal with buildings in Special Flood Hazard Areas (A, coastal A and V zones), you should know that FEMA continues to release updated maps and has just released its newly revised Elevation Certificate (FEMA form 086-0-33).

FEMA continues to release updated Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM panels) throughout the country. These are the maps which indicate whether your structure is located in a special flood hazard area and correspondingly whether you will have to comply with the any adopted flood provisions including those within the building code. Current FIRM panels can be accessed online at:

In addition, FEMA has released its newly revised Elevation Certificate (FEMA form 086-0-33). This is the form that is used to certify the elevations of the various building components for purposes of determining applicable rules and/or insurability. Key items on this form include having to specify whether the elevation is based on the 1927 datum or the 1983 datum and the level of precision on the data entered. The new form along with instruction on filling out the form can be accessed at:

Given that this is a form that an engineer, serving in an engineering capacity, can complete and submit for public record, licensees are strongly encouraged to review the requirements of Florida Administrative Code 61G15. In particular, Chapters 23 and 29 dealing with Certification Procedures and Prohibitions discussing what is required of an engineer when providing a signed and sealed certification.

For more information on flood plain management, please visit the Association of State Floodplain Managers or the Florida Floodplain Managers Association.

About the Author

William C. Bracken, PE, SI, CFM, is a licensed Professional Engineer and Special Inspector in Florida, and is the president and principal engineer for Bracken Engineering, located in Tampa. Mr. Bracken has served on the FBPE Board since 2012 and served as Board chair for the years 2015 and 2016. He also served as the FBPE’s vice chair for the years 2013 and 2014.