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Flood Recovery Efforts Continue This Week


June 11, 2012, 10 am – Another busy week is shaping up for recovery from the flood emergency, Mayor Keith Hobbs said today.

Affected residents are reminded to get their garbage out to the curb for the special collection that is ongoing with efforts stepped up today since there is no regular waste collection on Mondays. As well, clean-up work is ongoing through the Safe Homes program led by the City’s Facilities & Fleet Department with qualified contractors and volunteers, the Mennonite Disaster Team and Samaritan’s Purse.

“Clean-up is the priority and we expect another busy week,” said Mayor Keith Hobbs. “We are also seeing signs we’re heading in the right direction.”

Red Cross has registered approximately 1,000 households and is starting to scale back its services due to a decrease in demand. Similarly, the Salvation Army is seeing reduced use of its food and water service with only 27 individuals having lunch and dinner on Sunday.

Tonight, eight individuals will be appointed by City Council to the Disaster Relief Committee that will fundraise and focus on claims for residents affected by the flood who either don’t have insurance or have inadequate coverage.

City Clerk John Hannam reminds residents affected by the flood that the claims process will take some time. “A claim form is not available yet. We will make an announcement on the claims process as the Disaster Relief Committee gets under way,” Hannam said.

In keeping with the commitment made at the June 2 public meetings, the City is holding another set of public meetings on Saturday, June 23. Meetings will include an update and questions & answers followed by an opportunity to pickup claim forms and ask specific questions. Meetings held as follows:  

  • Slovak Legion, 801 Atlantic Avenue, 1 to 2:30 pm
  • Moose Hall, 434 Fort William Road, 4 to 5:30 pm

Affected residents without insurance or inadequate coverage can get ready to make a claim by documenting damages: prepare lists; take pictures of damaged property; keep a diary; maintain receipts, invoices and estimates.

When claim forms are available, an announcement will be made and posted at www.Thunderbay.ca/flood.

Donations are being accepted at the City’s Cashiers at Victoriaville Civic Centre, 111 Syndicate Ave. S., and will be held in trust while the Fund is established. Only donations to the Disaster Relief Committee Fund will be matched by the Province.

Facilities Update

If the re-commissioning of two more pumps succeeds today, the City will revisit the water restrictions and could re-open the Canada Games Complex, Churchill Pool and Volunteer Pool on Tuesday. Tuesday marks two weeks that the pools have been closed.

“We hope residents will continue to monitor their water use,” said Acting Mayor Rebecca Johnson. “As time progresses we’re getting closer to it being business as usual, but we are not quite there yet. We’re going to gradually return to offering the services that people expect, such as swimming and fitness.”

The re-commissioning of these two large pumps will bring the plant a step closer to full pumping capacity, said Kerri Marshall, Manager of the Environment. If all goes well, there will be four pumps running at the Water Pollution Control Plant by Monday night.

Safe Home Clean-up Program

About 510 homeowners have now registered for clean-up assistance through the Safe Home clean-up program through the City’s Facilities & Fleet Department, working with contractors, the Mennonite Disaster Team, Samaritan’s Purse and qualified volunteers.

Initial contact has been made with all 510 homes, though the City is waiting for call-backs from about one third of the homes and continues to provide the appropriate follow up. The focus of the ongoing clean-up is on making homes safe and to address health issues. There have been 152 homes assisted with more scheduled for today.

“Uninsured homeowners that require assistance with damaged hot water tanks and furnaces are encouraged to call the flood line to request help,” said Michael Smith, General Manager – Facilities and Fleet.

Affected residents, especially those with no insurance, who need help with clean-up are asked to call 98 FLOOD [983-5663].

Take Care After Flood

The Thunder Bay District Health Unit reminds affected residents to be safe during clean-up efforts by adhering to the following tips:

  • Get medical attention if any unusual physical symptoms are noticed, ie. rashes, difficulty breathing, rapid heart rate, fever
  • Use chemicals and bleach according to instructions. Wear protective clothing to avoid direct contact with cleaning products and contaminated water
  • Lift heavy objects with a straight back instead of bending at the waist. Only lift objects with a weight that can be managed and take extra care on wet surfaces

Visit www.tbdhu.com for more tips.

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Contact:          Brandon Walker, Communications Officer, 625-2438


 

Update on Flood-Related Services at June 11, 2012 - Backgrounder

June 11, 2012, 10 am – The following is up-to-date information on services available for affected residents.

Registration with the Red Cross

Approximately 1,000 households have registered with The Canadian Red Cross.

Those currently left most vulnerable by the flooding events can receive extended relief through The Canadian Red Cross Registration and Assessment Centres. Locations and times are as follows: 

  • St. Peter’s Church, 10 am – 7 pm
  • Confederation College McIntyre Building, 10 am – 7 pm

There are also showers available at Lakehead Universty in the South Residence in the Schreider Building. Those interested can check in at the front desk. The shower service is available from 8 am to midnight.

To register or request transportation call 98 FLOOD [983-5663], select option 2.

Food and Water

A Salvation Army van is providing lunch and dinner daily at the following locations and times:

  • 11:15 am and 5:15 pm – travelling McIntosh to McNaughton (St. Peter’s Church)
  • 11:45 am to 1:45 pm, 5:45 pm to 7:45 pm – St. Peter’s Church
     

Safe Home Clean-up Program

Affected residents, especially those with no insurance, who need help with clean-up are asked to call 98 FLOOD [983-5663]. Uninsured homeowners can also receive assistance with damaged hot water tanks and furnaces through this program through the City’s Facilities & Fleet Department, working with contractors, the Mennonite Disaster Team, Samaritan’s Purse and qualified volunteers.

Residents are asked to take photos of the damage and then the Safe Home Team will follow these steps:

  • Remove contaminated furniture and personal affects
  • Remove contaminated construction materials (wall and floor finishes, millwork and insulation)
  • Clean and disinfect affected areas to the same standard expected by insurance companies
  • Dry affected areas
  • Replace damaged hot water tanks and furnaces
  • Conduct an environmental assessment (asbestos, mould, etc.)

Waste Collection

To assist residents and businesses affected by the flood, the City of Thunder Bay is also offering:

  • no limit on number of bags for garbage collection in areas affected by the flood until further notice
  • special, free of charge large rubbish collection is available by calling 625-2195 for service [also available Saturday and Sunday]
  • Solid Waste and Recycling Facility on Mapleward Road is open seven days a week, including  from 8 am to 4:30 pm on Sunday.
     

Free Calling to 98 FLOOD

Tbaytel is offering free calling to 98 FLOOD (983-5663) from its Millennium Pay Phones within the city. These pay phones are the units with the scrolling displays.

To place a call to 98 FLOOD (983-5663), a customer does not have to deposit coins but if one does the coins will be returned.

Key Contact Numbers

  • City contact for offers of assistance and requests for help – 98 FLOOD [983-5663] or flood@thunderbay.ca
  • For more information visit www.thunderbay.ca/flood
  • Thunder Bay Hydro – 343-1111 or after hours 343-1002 – for electrical problems or concerns
  • Infrastructure & Operations – 625-2195 – to report flooding or for questions or concerns about City roads and other City infrastructure
  • Insurance Bureau of Canada – 1-800-387-2880  ext. 4700 – for information about insurance policies, Monday to Friday, 8 am to 5 pm
  • CAM Clothing Assistance for low or no cost clothing, linens and some furniture – 474-3583
  • Ministry of Transportation – 511 – for information about provincially-owned highways
  • 211 for all community programs and services
  • 911 should only be called if there is an emergency

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Contact:          Brandon Walker, Communications Officer, 625-2438