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Managing flood on the Gold Coast

We are committed to protecting the Gold Coast's built and natural environment against flooding. Find all the information you need about managing flood in our city.

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Flood level search

A flood search system is in place to provide detailed peak flood levels which can then be compared with the resident's information about their property. It is recommended that a licensed surveyor be engaged to accurately determine property and floor levels.

A flood level search report can be obtained for a property. It summarises available flood information on the property like estimated designated flood level (for determining floor levels) and ground level at the centre of the property. However, it does not show the flood extent.

What is included in a flood search report?

The outcome of a flood search is the Designated Flood Level, which is reported in metres AHD (Australian Height Datum), the nationally adopted datum or standard to which all elevation for mapping is to be referred. As a general guide, 0.0 metres AHD is close to the mean sea level. Therefore 1.5 metres AHD is approximately equivalent to 1.5 metres above Mean Sea Level. It is to be noted that tide information is not on this datum.

The Designated Flood Levels are used as the basis for determining floor levels for specific service facilities, general utilities and residential properties.

To enhance future safety for residents, the City requires that habitable floor levels are a minimum of 300 millimetres above the designated flood level.

Flood search results are associated with riverine or regional flooding only, not local flooding. Regional flooding is caused by long duration rainfall over a whole catchment or number of catchments. Local flooding is caused by high intensity and short duration rainfall over a local drainage catchment.

A flood the size of a 100 year ARI has one chance in 100 (one per cent) of occurring in any one year. However, the rainfall events which cause floods are random and there is no guarantee when such a flood will occur, that it won't be much larger, or that it will only occur once in any year.

If your property level is below the Designated Flood Level, your property may be affected by a 100 year ARI flood. If your property is above the Designated Flood Level, your property may not be affected.

Diagram of houses and flood levels

Designated Flood level - Surveyed Floor level = Depth of flooding

Download an example of a flood search report.

How do I request a flood search report?

Complete and submit the Search request form below.

An administrative fee applies for undertaking the search and forwarding the results. Fees can be found in the Register of fees and charges.

Please visit our Lodging a search request page for more information about options available for lodgement and payment of search requests.

Further information

For further information, contact us.

Related information

Jump to key information
  • How do I obtain flood levels?

    The City Plan online interactive mapping tool has been updated to include flood planning levels and flood depths for land in the current City Plan Flood overlay maps. You can also apply to City of Gold Coast for a formal Flood Search Report.

  • What is a flood search report?

    A flood search system is in place to provide Designated Flood Levels which can then be compared with the resident's information about their property. It is recommended that a licensed surveyor be engaged to accurately determine property and floor levels.

    Please note, flood levels provided through flood search reports reflect a rainfall that has 1 per cent chance of occurrence in a given year (Designated Flood Level) for most areas of the city. Rarer flood level will be higher than the report flood level through the flood search system.

  • Do I need a flood search report?

    A flood search report should be obtained from the City when development is proposed on land in the flood overlay maps. Should you require further information regarding a flood search report please contact us on 07 5582 8809.

  • Is there a fee associated with a flood search?

    All searches undertaken by the City of Gold Coast attract a fee for processing. Refer to the Register of fees and charges for the current fee for flood level information. The written report may prove valuable when purchasing a property, building a home or when applying for flood insurance. (The fee excludes the cost of collecting the data and producing the computer flood models.)

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