The cleanup begins

By Wayne Gates – 

The floodwaters are gone, but the cleanup remains.
The Ohio River is back below flood stage after one of the highest floods in years last week.
“They still have some flood water in Aberdeen in the public areas down in the park and Higginsport has some damage at the public boat ramp. There is also some damage to public roads in the area,” said Brown County Emergency Management Director Barbara Davis.
“The Village of Ripley doesn’t have any damage to report at this time, and the townships are also still doing damage assessment.”
Davis said that the damage assessment will concentrate on the dollar amount of damage that the flooding caused.
“We are going to have a FEMA visit next week to do some preliminary damage assessment with local and state officials to see if we hit the damage threshold to qualify for financial assistance to recover from the flood.”
Davis said damage to individual property still needs to be reported, but that federal assistance was unlikely.
“We are not anywhere near the threshold to be able to do individual assistance from FEMA, but we are in the process of developing a regional long term recovery committee to help people that need it,” she said.
The long term recovery committee can help residents who were uninsured who have been displaced from their homes or had damage to their property that is still disrupting their daily lives.
Davis said that it is very important that any flood damage be reported, because damage is analyzed on a cumulative level for federal and state assistance.
Regarding cleanup procedures, Davis said “Residents should reach out to their local fire chiefs and other local officials for instructions on what to do with debris. Individual communities are developing their own plan for cleanup.”
Davis said that those who are cleaning up flood debris need to use protection like gloves and masks in areas that have possibly been exposed to mold.
To report flood damage, request assistance or ask any flood related questions, call the Brown County EMA office at (937) 378-5100.