No Size Limitations (OLD)

Large Flood Barriers With No Size Limitations

FloodBreak successfully withstands load test

At FloodBreak, we engineer and fabricate large passive automatic flood barriers that fit the custom needs of our customers on a per-project basis.

Our flood barriers are modular in nature, with each section self-supporting due to the use of tension members.

As a result, there is no practical  height or width limit to the barriers we create. 

It all depends on what’s required to floodproof your valuable assets.

Custom Built To Meet Your Floodproofing Needs

We have built many large flood barriers for our customers, like a recent 50’ x 10.5’ passive flood barrier for a NY project.

During a test, the barrier was successfully deployed without human intervention or power, lifted solely by the rising water. The gate was also raised by an optional lift system that operates independently to facilitate periodic maintenance or other needs for manually lifting.

Structural calculations were done by an independent engineer to verify that the gate would support the loads it could be subjected to during significant flood events.

Because our passive flood barriers are highly adaptable and custom fabricated, they can easily serve to protect pedestrian and vehicular entryways, floodproof openings in floodwalls, and more.

Click here to learn more about the specifics of passive flood control. 

Large FlodBreak floodgate successfully tested
Assembled in sections

Examples Of Our Large Automatic Flood Barriers

large flood barrier 1
massive flood barrier
large flood barrier at stadium
large flood barrier 3

Our Passive Flood Protection Solutions:

FloodBreak passive barrier system can be designed to protect critical routes of ingress and egress in buildings, parking lots, driveways, loading docks, or openings in perimeter floodwalls and levees.

Learn how our passive flood barriers protect vulnerable openings here.

For shoreline projects, FloodBreak barriers utilize our passive automatic technology to ensure 24/7 flood protection without people or power and can be designed to meet the emergency preparedness plans of the community.

Learn more about how passive can protect shoreline properties here.

FloodBreak designs flood protection solutions for building vents, whether above or below grade, and ground-level vent shaft openings.

Learn more about our vent systems here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

We have numerous gates 12′ with many other tall gates in various stages of design & fabrication. There is no practical height limitation and gates can be designed for wave action loading and other requirements.

The widest fabricated FloodBreak gate is 300 feet wide. The system is built in panels that are each self-supporting so there is no practical limit to width or height.

With our modular approach, we can provide any length needed for your project without sidewalls or breaks in the opening. Depending on the project, breaks may be placed strategically to assist maintenance or make turns in the wall.  Floodgate panels can be delivered as a single unit or easily bolted together on site.

FloodBreak floodgates are designed with tension members rather than stanchions or vertical stops and are modular in nature. There are no practical limits in height or width, and we can provide custom-engineered solutions for any flood problem.

Contact Us:

For questions about our passive flood barrier technical specifications, reach out to us at or complete the contact form below.

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    Our founder, Lou Waters, in front of a very large flood barrier in the freezing cold.

    MTA Tests FloodBreak Vent Shaft System for Subway Flood Protection

    The FloodBreak® Vent Shaft System is a versatile flood control product line that protects a range of ventilation openings above and below grade.

    NY Subway system installs FloodBreak to protect against street floodingInitially designed as a flood control solution for the MTA, the closure device passively protects subway system vents from being inundated by localized street flooding.

    In response to Sandy, The MTA asked FloodBreak to develop a 2nd generation closure device to protect against coastal storm surge for their vulnerable vent openings, particularly in lower Manhattan. It would only be used in a planned shutdown if a major storm like Hurricane Irene or Superstorm Sandy approached the city.

    MTA tests FloodBreak vent shaftThis system was recently tested for government leaders and featured in the Wall Street Journal.

    Here’s the link: A Grate Fix for Flooding

    The double–gated device is designed for 10’ pressure head, near 100% airflow during “rest” position and is deployable by single operator with special tool, a MTA requirement. It is simple by design, requiring no maintenance, no power and ready for quick deployment.

    NY Subway Crews boarding up vent shafts (2)_200x150Once installed inside the ventilation shafts, the units will eliminate the need for the labor intensive and risky process previously used where MTA personnel covered sidewalk grates with plywood and sand bags.

    Historic Rosenberg Library Protected by Passive Flood Barriers

    Architecturally Integrated Flood Gates Protect Rosenberg Library.

    Customer: Rosenberg Public Library
    Location: Galveston, TX
    Products: Vehicle and Pedestrian Gates
    Installation dates: 2010 – 2011

    The Rosenberg Library, a historic building on Galveston Island in Texas, was ravaged by Hurricane Ike in 2008 but now is fully restored and protected from future storms.  Today the many Texas treasures on display at the Rosenberg Library Museum, inside the Rosenberg Library, are protected by FloodBreak passive flood barriers as part of an overall hurricane proofing of the building. Damage was extensive as part of the building was under as much as 6 feet of floodwater at the height of Ike’s storm surge.

    The FloodBreak Solution:


    Two 7′ tall passive flood barriers from FloodBreak protect the bottom floor entrances to the 500 year flood elevation.

    But you wouldn’t know it unless you looked very closely as they are covered by carpet and instead of the the standard aluminum wiper walls, they use polished concrete, stained to match the historic building architecture. Though hidden, they provide 24/7 flood protection and should another storm surge or flood occur, the floodwater will cause the buoyant floodgates to deploy and seal against the sidewalls.

    The Rosenberg Library is the oldest public library in Texas in continuous operation. It holds about 7,500 items related to the history of Galveston and the Republic of Texas.  Hurricane Ike resulted in devastating damage but the library today is better than ever and protected against future storms.

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    NJ dealership saved again from flash flooding

    The FloodBreak® passive flood barrier installed in 2008, once again protected Route 22 Honda, a Hillside, NJ Honda dealership, when flash floods came unexpectedly again this summer.  The FloodBreak Vehicle Gate deployed automatically. lifted by the fast rising floodwaters caused by a slow-moving thunderstorm that inundated  sections of Route 22 in Union County, NJ forcing road closure.  Fortunately, Route 22 Honda was protected from damage to vehicles parked in their underground garage, just as they were protected during two previous flood events.

    The Honda dealer is no stranger to flooding as they have experienced floods in past years including in 2010 when their decision to install a FloodBreak Automatic Floodgate paid for itself when it protected their property and helped reduce insurance premiums.

    Read about more FloodBreak saves

    FloodBreak presents solution to raise levees for FEMA accreditation at FMA Conference

    FloodBreak participated with levee experts at the 2013 FMA Annual Conference to discuss an innovative approach used by the IBWC to raise their levees to meet new flood elevations. The title of the presentation was “Raise Levees for FEMA Accreditation Without Raising Roadways or Bridges – An Innovative Approach and Case Study”

    An innovative and potentially less costly alternative is the use of passive flood barriers that extend across roadways and connect the levee at the new elevation requirement. These flood barriers are permanently installed beneath the roadway to allow continuous traffic service and are raised during flood events without human intervention or power to protect the dry/landward side.

    FloodBreak prevents flood damage at the Vanderbilt Eye Institute

    A FloodBreak® passive floodgate system was installed at the Vanderbilt Eye Institute in Nashville, TN to provide permanent protection 24/7  against future flooding.

    FloodBreak Automatic Floodgate was selected to prevent future flood damageFloodBreak Automatic Floodgates protect against floodingFloodBreak passive flood barriers deploy without human intervention or powerFloodBreak passive flood barriers protect 24/7The Vanderbilt Eye Institute, a department of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, was inundated with two feet of water on the first floor in the 2010 Flood.  Flooding on the Cumberland River also damaged the Grand Ole Opry House, Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center, Bridgestone Arena and LP Field – home of the Tennessee Titans.

    The FloodBreak pedestrian floodgate is permanently installed beneath grade at the Eye Institue entrance and will deploy automatically, without human intervention or power, should floodwaters approach the building.  The passive system is comprised of a buoyant beam that is lifted by the hydrostatic pressure from the rising floodwaters to prevent the water from entering through the doorway.  Self activating gaskets seal the barrier against the sidewalls.


    FloodBreak chosen to protect another hospital

    The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) is an 84-acre campus on Galveston Island that was devastated by Hurricane Ike.   FEMA awarded the state of Texas more than $90 million, in the form of a Public Assistance Grant, for flood mitigation including FloodBreak passive flood barriers as part of dry floodproofing measures. FEMA requires that all non-residential structures that are located in Zone AE and are to be substantially improved must either have their lowest floors elevated to or above the base Flood Elevation (BFE) or be dry floodproofed (made substantially impermeable) to or above the BFE.

    FloodBreak passive flood barriers protect against floodingFloodBreak passive flood barriers provide flood protection below the BFEFloodBreak passive flood barriers were chosen to provide permanent impermeable passive protection, but also because they are designed to withstand hydrostatic, hydrodynamic, and impact forces produced by flooding or high water events. When completed, the Primary Care Pavilion will have 13 FloodBreak passive flood barriers protecting vulnerable entrances.

    UTMB joins a growing list of protected hospitals:

    • MD Anderson Cancer Center – Houston, TX
    • Lourdes Hospital – Binghamton, NY
    • Columbus Regional Hospital – Columbus, IN
    • Bayshore Medical Center – Pasadena, TX
    • Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth – Beaumont, TX
    • Lebanon Medical Center – Lebanon, OH
    • Cheyenne Medical Center – Cheyenne, WY

    FloodBreak Presentation at NAO Conference

    FloodBreak presented flood mitigation technology solutions at the National Aerospace Organization (NAO) conference in November, 2012 in Cocoa Beach FL.  The conference: Protecting Military Airbases & Commercial Airports from the Destructive Forces of Nature and was designed to help military airbases or municipal and regional airports protect their facilities, aircraft, personnel, and assets against the destructive forces of nature including hurricanes and flooding.

    Representatives from general and commercial aviation, municipal and regional airports, military airbase representatives and military civil engineering project managers attended the event.

    Live demonstrations of passive mitigation technologyFloodBreak demonstrated its passive flood mitigation technology with a demonstration trailer where viewers could see the passive flood barrier lifted by the hydrostatic pressure from the floodwater.

    Learn more about the conference and the NAO by watching the video featuring Colonel John D. Thomas, U.S. Air Force (Ret.) President, National Aerospace Organization.

    FloodBreak will present passive flood mitigation technology at the Protecting Military Airbases and Commercial Airports Against the Forces of Nature conference