News

Officials determining assistance for flood-damaged properties

By Trevor Terfloth, Chatham Daily News

The walkway beside the Thames River in downtown Chatham is shown on Wednesday. (Trevor Terfloth/The Daily News)

The walkway beside the Thames River in downtown Chatham is shown on Wednesday. (Trevor Terfloth/The Daily News)

CHATHAM  - 

Provincial officials are in the midst of a disaster assessment after flood waters from the Thames River wreaked havoc on Chatham-Kent neighbourhoods on the weekend.

Representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs are determining how flood-damaged properties may be covered under the Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontario program, the municipality said in a release Wednesday.

Mayor Randy Hope said he was happy to see the process underway.

“I’m pleased with the way people have rolled in quickly now that the water has subsided,” he said.

Although the program has not yet been activated, residents and business owners who have suffered property damage due to the flood are encouraged to:

  • Contact the municipality at 519-360-1998.
  • Contact their insurance provider.
  • Take photographs to document damage and keep receipts for expenses incurred.

If the program is activated, residents and business owners must complete an application and include receipts and other pertinent documentation within 120 days.

The municipality will have additional information upon program activation.

Hope said municipal staff had a chance to meet with the disaster officials. The mayor also met personally with the affected businesses.

“I told them the program had changed since previous years,” he said.

“I don’t know if people are qualified (for funding), but it’s better to proceed on the side that you will be reimbursed.”

Residents who left their homes and are considering returning need to ensure their street is open and utilities are operational. For information on restoring service, residents can call 519-360-1998 or the utilities directly.

As water levels continue to drop, officials are reminding residents to take precautions if water entered their homes or businesses.

The municipality is preparing a plan for removal of flood-damaged debris from affected areas. That information will be made public as soon as the plan is finalized.

Residents with questions about flooding can call 519-360-1998 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Those calling after business hours should leave their information in order to receive a return call.

Chatham Daily News

Flooding info

For more information about the disaster relief program, visit Ontario.ca/disasterassistance

For general information about insurance, visit the Insurance Bureau of Canada site: www.ibc.ca

Information about cleaning up after a flood: https://www.bchu.org/ServicesWeProvide/HealthyLivingAndSafety/Documents/Cleaning%20up%20after%20a%20Flood-FactSheet_v2.pdf

Information about the dangers of mould growth and how to prevent it: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/first-nation/care-for-your-home/mould/upload/flood-cleanup-first-nation.pdf

For information on food safety, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/pdf/flyer-eatsafefood.pdf

TTerfloth@postmedia.com

@DailyNewsTT