Flood briefs: Red Cross flood recovery efforts continueThe initial disaster response is over, but residents affected by the Northland flooding continue to have emergency needs, the Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross said in a news release.
By: News Tribune staff, Duluth News Tribune
The initial disaster response is over, but residents affected by the Northland flooding continue to have emergency needs, the Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross said in a news release.
Red Cross caseworkers and trained health and mental health professionals continue to meet with affected residents in the field and one-on-one to help with immediate needs. The Red Cross also is providing drinks, snacks and cleanup kits this weekend.
During the initial phase of disaster response, the Red Cross operated four shelters for 377 overnight stays, served 2,121 meals and 51,591 snacks, operated six Emergency Response Vehicles, distributed 1,053 cleanup kits and made 344 mental health contacts and 440 health service contacts, the news release said.
The response included 198 trained staff members and volunteers comprised of 43 local volunteers from the Northland chapter and 155 visiting volunteers from nine states: Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Ohio and other parts of Minnesota.
The Red Cross requires all volunteers to go through disaster-response classes.
To contact the Red Cross, call (218) 722-0071.
Separate flood waste
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency advises residents cleaning up from the flood to separate their waste into five piles:
People cleaning up should wear waterproof gloves and wash with soap afterward, the agency said.
Carlton County lakes being checked
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is sampling two Carlton County lakes because their water may have been contaminated during the flooding.
Moosehead Lake and Big Hanging Horn Lake were sampled on Friday and will be sampled again on Monday, the Carlton County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.
Until testing is complete, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources advises swimmers to enter lakes and rivers at their own risk.
Time line for rail repair uncertain
Excursions by railroad along the St. Louis River are expected to resume, but the timing is still uncertain.
In a news conference on Saturday morning, officials of the Lake Superior & Mississippi Railroad said operations are suspended until Burlington Northern & Santa Fe tracks over Kingsbury Creek are repaired. Those tracks were heavily damaged in the flood.
Burlington Northern engineers are looking at ways to repair the track but do not have a timeline for those repairs.
Coupons for free rides will be honored when the Lake Superior & Mississippi resumes operations later this summer as well as next year, members of the local all-volunteer railroad said.
Information will be updated at their website, www.lsmrr.org. People wishing to volunteer can check the website or call (218) 624-7549.