2012 Carlton County Flood Frequently Asked QuestionsHere are answers to many flood-related questions, from where to donate to where to take flood debris and much more.
Updated July 2, 2012
Where do I call?
- Emergencies Call 911
-Needing help or offering help? The first option is online at www.uwcarltoncounty.org. If you don’t have access to the internet, dial 211 or 800-543-7709.
-Non-Emergency Road Issues? Carlton County Highway Department (218) 384-9150
To Report Private Property Damage? County Assessor’s Office, (218) 218-384-9142. If you cannot reach someone, please call 218-384-9149.
-The City of Moose Lake has its own emergency operations center. The police department is at (218) 485-8404. Moose Lake City Hall is (218) 485-4522.
-For other flood-related questions or referrals? Leave a message with the Carlton County Emergency Operations Center, (218) 384-9509.
Where are County resources listed?
View resources on the Carlton County website at www.co.carlton.mn.us or
Need help or want to offer help?
Needing help or offering help? The first option is online at www.uwcarltoncounty.org. If you don’t have access to the internet, dial 211 or 800-543-7709.
How Do I Report Private Property Damage:
Private Property owners should report damage to the Carlton County Assessor. There is an online reporting tool at: www.co.carlton.mn.us and then click on “report flood damage online”. (There’s also a link in that form to submit flood photos. Those photos are used for damage reporting. (The county is also collecting flood damage photos for other purposes, so make sure if you have flood damage you need to report, submit to correct link) or you can call the Assessor’s office at 218-384-9142 , 218-384-9144. If you cannot reach someone, please call 218-384-9149, leave your name, address and a phone number where we can reach you.
What About Road Issues and Information?
Emergency road conditions please call 911.
Other road issues call the Carlton County Highway Department (218) 384-9150.
Road Closure information is available from the Carlton County webpage www.co.carlton.mn.us
If you see or smell anything dangerous or harmful, call 911.
Will I get financial assistant to help clean up or restore my home?
Though funding for private property damage is not guaranteed, there is a possibility that some local assistance may be accessible after property damage assessments have taken place. At this time, there is no guarantee of federal emergency assistance for private businesses and residents.
What about Federal assistance?
FEMA officials visited the region the week of June 25-29 to review damage to public infrastructure. It is rare, but possible, that our area may qualify for individual assistance. A team of FEMA experts will be in the region July 11-12 to review the damage to homes and businesses and to assess whether our region qualifies for individual assistance.
Is there any other help on the way:
Gov. Mark Dayton has said he will call a special session of the state Legislature to consider additional help for the region. Details and timing of the session are being worked out and will be publicly announced in the next few weeks.
What if I’m a Veteran?
All veterans or widow of veterans who apply may be eligible for up to $750 reimbursement to help defray the cost of personal property cleanup due to the flood damage that they have sustained. Contact the Carlton County Veterans Service Office at (218)499-6838 to obtain an application. Application and copies of receipts must be dated between the disaster time frame as designated by Governor Dayton and/or FEMA, which currently is June 13th, 2012 – September 30th, 2012.
Items that may qualify are: Appliances (furnaces, water heaters, refrigerators, washers, dryers,) Building materials (panels, sheetrock, lumber) Cleaning Supplies (shop vacuums, fans, dehumidifiers) Misc items (clothing, flooring, carpet, hardwood, tile, food, plumbing supplies, sump pumps, hoses, toilets, rental or purchasing costs for generators, excavators, backhoes, chain saws, sand/sandbags, shelter costs in displaced by the flood) Cleaning companies (i.e. Service Master, Glory Shine, etc) driveway repairs (gravel, culverts, asphalt, concrete) and insurance deductibles with a receipt showing payment was made.
What is happening with the flood funds that are being advertised?
Fundraising is underway to meet the region’s “Unmet” needs, which are defined as: The time when an individual’s own resources or help from traditional sources such as insurance and government are insufficient to facilitate recovery and rebuilding of their homes.
Unmet needs are identified by the survivor, verified by casework, and agreed on by the recovery group.
Not all “unmet needs” receive assistance. Voluntary agencies and long-term recovery groups will identify and prioritize those unmet needs eligible for assistance.
When does assistance for unmet needs become available?
Though fundraising efforts must begin immediately after a disaster, the distribution of long-term recovery funds is not likely to begin for several weeks.
It is estimated that persons affected by the disaster should not expect these resources to begin to be available for at least 60 days following the disaster.
In part, this time is required to raise funds and organize a long-term recovery system. These 60 days also include time required for survivors to apply for and receive or be denied assistance available from insurance, federal, and State resources.
How will these funds be distributed?
A long-term recovery group representing the Carlton County will be established by the fund to administer the distribution of funds.
The long term recovery group will establish unmet needs which the fund can address and maximum amounts for distribution based on available resources and general need. Voluntary agencies and local long-term recovery groups will identify and prioritize those unmet needs eligible for assistance.
Can I contribute?
You can make a donation at ccflood.com or go to the United Way of Carlton County’s website at:
What about businesses?
The Northland Foundation is coordinating a group of foundations and businesses to provide money to pay business owners up to $5,000
In partnership with AgStar Financial Services, Blandin Foundation, and Great River Energy, Northland has established the Business Flood Recovery Fund to assist northeastern Minnesota businesses affected by the June 20, 2012 flooding. These dollars will be allocated as grants to businesses focusing primarily on Aitkin, Carlton, St. Louis, and eastern Lake Counties, as well as other areas in the Foundation’s 7-county service region which sustained flood damage.
Grants up to $5,000 each will focus on the replacement or reconditioning of tangible assets including inventory, machinery/equipment/furniture, supplies, and building and site repair. Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis with the goal of providing a response within two to four weeks. The final grant application deadline is September 14, 2012. Funds will be available for distribution until they are expended. Funds are limited and applications will be considered on a first come, first served basis.
Before applying, please download and read through the Grant Guidelines available on the website.
Residents should keep these in mind as they return home or work towards recovery. In general, residents should stay away from hazardous materials, water, and propane tanks. Please follow the following safety measures:
Standing water is unsanitary water.
Raw sewage and septic failure is evident, avoid contact if possible.
There are unforeseen hazards and loose debris.
Is my vacant home secure?
Local law enforcement is continuing to patrol all affected areas. If you see suspicious activity, call 911.
How do I start the cleanup process?
Basic safety tips for cleaning up following a flood are available through a link on the Carlton County webpage www.co.carlton.mn.us. State health department tip sheets food safety are also available.
What are Carlton County Debris Removal Options?
The county is removing flood-related, non commercial debris from curbsides.
Carlton County has named Tim Homstad as the Flood Debris Removal Coordinator, call 218-380-0355 or 218-384-9172 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. to answer questions about debris removal or schedule a pickup.
Carlton County has announced more extra hours for debris removal at four sites within the county for flood-related debris. Residents of Carlton County can self-haul their debris to any of the following locations. Storm-related residential/non-commercial debris that is sorted will be accepted free of charge.
Waste accepted at these transfer stations include: Demolition and Solid Waste, Household Hazardous Waste, Appliances and Electronics.
1.) Shamrock Landfill is located at 761 Minnesota Highway 45 in Cloquet. The entrance is off Highway 45, just south of the Park & Ride. Open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
2.) Carlton County Transfer Station 1950 Highway 210, ¾ miles of I-35. Open 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
3.) Barnum County Shop 3888 Highway 61 Barnum. 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
4.) Cromwell County Shop 1400 Highway 73, Cromwell. 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
The county currently is conducting its first round of curbside pickup of flood-related debris from residential and non-commercial sites. The tentative schedule may change but a second round of pickups will be scheduled in the near future.
Advice on Repair/Clean-up work following the flood:
Residents are advised to follow these basic tips when working with volunteers or paid vendors following the flood.
Never provide your personal identification until you have verified the contractor.
Verify that contractors have valid licenses and insurance.
Obtain up to three bids before selecting a contractor.
Do not pay for the full costs of services upfront.
For vendor questions, call the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (800) 657-3944
Good information on repairs and contracting is also available on this website:
Volunteering and Donations
If you need a volunteer for yourself or your community, please use the online volunteering form at www.uwcarltoncounty.org OR call 211 or 1-800-543-7709. Please use the same method to offer to volunteer.
Donations: If you have friends or relatives who want to give money, direct them to www.ccflood.com
When will Jay Cooke State Park and Highway 210 near Thompson Reopen?
Both the Minnesota Department of Transportation and the Department of Natural Resources have closed the area. It remains a danger zone. Both agencies plan to announce a schedule for when decisions on what to do next will be announced. Both are expected to remain closed for an extended period of time.
What are the Public Health Concerns?
Water: Free well water testing kits are available for Carlton County Residents in the Carlton County Planning and Zoning office located at 301 Walnut Avenue in Carlton. The Minnesota Department of Health is providing the free kits, which are available on a first-come, first-served basis. If a well casing was submerged or if the floodwater came within 50 feet of the well, it should be tested. Do not use water from potentially contaminated wells for cooking, bathing or drinking. Use bottled water until your well is safe to use again.
Food Safety: Food is generally safe unless it has been in direct contact with floodwater or has not been properly refrigerated because of a power failure. Clean any canned goods you intend to keep by washing with warm soap and water, disinfect the outside of cans with a solution of 1 tbsp of bleach in a gallon of water, and remove labels when cleaning cans. Discard items that may be contaminated which includes any foods in paper, boxes, glass jars or other non waterproof containers that may have been in contact with flood waters. Discard frozen food that was thawed and held at room temperature for more than 2 hours. Discard any food with an unusual color or odor.
Health: Disease causing germs are present in floodwater or backed up sewage. Common sense and basic hygiene can help you keep the risk low. Skin contact with floodwater by itself does not pose a threat unless you have an open wound or get flood water contamination in your mouth. To keep risks low, wash hands thoroughly after working in a contaminated area, wear rubber gloves and boots to protect hands and feet, take a shower with clean water after working in a contaminated area, assume anything touched by flood water is contaminated. Use hand washing with soap and water then use alcohol based hand sanitizer if it is available. Wash hands before touching food or face, after using toilet, after touching items touched by floodwater or sewage, after flood clean-up, dry with paper towels and discard in trash. Using flooded and untested well water for bathing or showering is not advised.
Safety: Wear an N-95 respirator, rubber boots, rubber gloves and eye goggles to clean up. Check with an expert before cleaning up in small spaces like silos, well pits, storm shelter or unventilated basements due to risk of contaminants like carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide and methane. Don’t let children play in or near floodwater, wash children’s hands frequently, especially before meals and after using the toilet, disinfect toys that may be contaminated using contaminated with sewage as young children may put these items in their mouths.
Mold: To kill mold on surfaces scrub first with soap and water and rinse with water. Mix ¼ - ½ cup bleach with a gallon of water, wipe surfaces with this bleach mix and allow to air dry. Use on non-porous hard surfaces like walls, floors and tables. This mixture can hurt your skin and lungs. Do not use it for dishes, children’s toys or surfaces that hold food. Wear gloves and old clothes that cover your skin. Open windows and doors and use a fan to blow the air outside. Use dehumidifiers. Do not use on porous surfaces like carpet or ceiling tile, throw them out. Do not mix bleach with other products. Use with caution.
Are the lakes safe to swim in?
Currently two Carlton County lakes are being sampled by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency because they have received impaired water during the recent flooding.
Until results of that testing is complete, the Department of Natural Resources has advised swimmers to enter lakes and rivers at their own risk.
Moosehead Lake has had high levels of fecal matter near the campground. Swimming is not recommended.
Big Hanging Horn Lake has elevated levels of fecal matter near the south end and swimmers should avoid that area.
Both lakes will be routinely sampled until the tests show the areas with acceptable bacteria levels.
For More Information
Informational bulletins are being emailed out to fire halls, townships, elected officials with requests to print and post in prominent locations. If you have news you’d like to see in here or have additional suggestions on where to distribute bulletins, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
We know many people are without computers or internet service, but there are many information sheets on the Carlton County website: