FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs)
Preliminary, Revised Charles Watershed FIRMs Available
On June 19, 2020, FEMA released preliminary, revised FIRMs for the Charles Watershed, which encompasses the majority of Hingham. The original FIRMs, in effect since 2012, were revised based on new hydrologic and hydraulic analyses, or more precise topographic data. In areas where this information was not available, the current floodplain data was incorporated into the preliminary, revised FIRMs.
All of Hingham's preliminary, revised FIRMs can be downloaded from FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center, under Preliminary Products. Hard copies of the preliminary, revised FIRMs are also available for review in the Conservation Office. The affected Hingham map panels are (each link will download a PDF of the map panel): 25023C0038K, 25023C0081K, 25023C0082K, 25023C0083K, 25023C0084K, 25023C0091L, 25023C0092L, 25023C0101L, 25023C0102K, 25023C0103L, and 25023C0111L. Finally, FEMA has developed a Flood Map Changes Viewer, which includes a tool to compare the current and preliminary floodplain data for a selected location.
The statutory, 90-day appeal period for the preliminary, revised Charles Watershed FIRMs ran from March 23, 2021 through June 21, 2021. Additional, detailed information about the appeal period is available below. After FEMA has addressed all appeals and comments related to the preliminary, revised FIRMs, they will begin to prepare finalized FIRMs, a process that will take an estimated seven to ten months.
A list of the previously issued Letter of Map Change (LOMC) actions, i.e. a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), Letter of Map Revision based on Fill (LOMR-F), or Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA), that were either incorporated, not incorporated (pending further review), or superseded as part of the Charles Watershed Study is also available below.
Cape Cod Watershed FIRMs Finalized
On January 22, 2020, FEMA finalized the Hingham FIRMs within the Cape Cod Watershed based on new hydrologic and hydraulic analyses, or more precise topographic data. In areas where this information was not available, the current floodplain data was incorporated into the finalized FIRMs.
The finalized FIRMs were scheduled to become effective July 22, 2020, however in June 2020, FEMA rescinded the FIRMs primarily because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ability of municipalities to hold Town Meetings, where applicable, and adopt the FIRMs in a timely fashion. FEMA reissued the FIRMs with no substantive changes on July 6, 2021.
The finalized FIRMs were also adopted as part of a Zoning By-Law amendment at the 2021 Annual Town Meeting (Article 27). The revised By-Law includes an updated Zoning Part B map, which depicts the updated flood zones and replaces the previous version of the map, and new language from a state issued model floodplain by-law that keeps the Town in compliance with the National Flood Insurance Program, thus making federal flood insurance available to residents.
The finalized FIRMs can be downloaded from FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center, under Effective Products. Hard copies of the finalized FIRMs are also available for review in the Conservation Office. The affected Hingham map panels are (each link will open the map panel in a new browser window): 25023C0091K, 25023C0092K, 25023C0101K, 25023C0103K, 25023C0104K, and 25023C0111K. The updated floodplain data is also available via the Town's GIS Map.
A list of the previously issued Letter of Map Change (LOMC) actions, i.e. a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), Letter of Map Revision based on Fill (LOMR-F), or Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA), that have been revalidated as part of the Cape Cod Watershed Study is available below.
LOMR, Effective December 13, 2017
On December 13, 2017, FEMA issued a third LOMR to the Town of Hull. Several Hingham FIRMs were updated and now indicate a LOMR effective date of December 13, 2017 (see below). No new coastal analysis was conducted in Hingham; only in Hull. Hingham's effective flood information, including flood zones, flood elevations, and floodway delineations were not revised.
Affected Map Panels
LOMR, Effective September 8, 2017
On September 8, 2017, FEMA issued a second LOMR to update the Limit of Moderate Wave Action (LiMWA) for Massachusetts. Several Hingham FIRMs were updated with this information (see below). No new coastal analysis was conducted; only the LiMWA was revised. Other effective flood hazard information, including flood zones, flood elevations, and floodway delineations were not revised. The updated LiMWA information is available via FEMA's Flood Map Service Center and the Town's GIS Map.
Affected Map Panels
LOMR, Effective August 14, 2015
On March 31, 2015, FEMA issued a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) for certain coastal areas in Hingham. This LOMR was based on a Town-sponsored analysis, performed by GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc., that resulted in changes to the 2012 FIRMs. Following a statutory, 90-day appeal period, during which no valid requests for additional changes were received by FEMA, the LOMR went into effect on August 14, 2015.
These changes were also adopted as part of a Zoning By-Law amendment at the 2016 Annual Town Meeting (Articles 35 and 38). The revised By-Law includes an updated Zoning Part B map, which depicts the updated flood zones and replaces the previous version of the map, and new language explaining the purpose of the “Floodplain Protection Overlay District.”
- FEMA 2012 Revalidation Letter for LOMCs (PDF)
- Flood Insurance Rate Maps - Updated FAQs (PDF)
- How to Request a Map Amendment - FEMA Guide (PDF)
- Qualified Professionals for Elevation Certificates and LOMAs (PDF)
- Importance of LiMWA - FEMA Fact Sheet (PDF)
- About the Mandatory Purchase of Flood Insurance (PDF)
- NFIP April 2015 Changes - FEMA Fact Sheet (PDF)
- Risk Rating 2.0 is Equity in Action - FEMA (PDF)
- Massachusetts Risk Rating 2.0 - FEMA (PDF)
Materials Available at the Hingham Public Library
1986 and 2012 FIRMs
The 1986 and 2012 FIRMs are viewable by clicking on a map year and grid below, or by visiting FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center and reviewing the Historic Products (all 1986, some 2012) and Effective Products (some 2012).
Note: The 1986 FIRMs were replaced by the 2012 FIRMs and are intended to be used for reference only. Additionally, six of the 2012 FIRMs were replaced in 2021 (see information related to the Cape Cod Watershed FIRMs, above).
Adobe Acrobat Reader
Each FIRM is an Adobe PDF document that can be viewed by downloading the free Adobe Acrobat Reader application. Each map file is large in size (approx 10Mb). Once the map has opened in Adobe Acrobat Reader, you will have the ability to zoom in and out, pan around the page and print a copy by using Adobe Acrobat Reader's controls.
Note: The Town of Hingham makes no warranty or guarantee of the accuracy of the maps nor assumes responsibility for any errors or inaccuracies in these maps. The Town also takes no responsibility for any decision(s) made or action(s) taken as a result of reliance on these maps. The use of these maps is at the users' own risk.