Richland County Assessing Effects of Area Flooding
April 3, 2019 | View PDF
Richland County Commissioners held a meeting on March 29 to discuss the current status of flooding in the county. Although there was some subsequent flooding of county roads and five reported homes, Richland Country did not receive as much damage as McKenzie County, ND to the east. Currently all county roads are reopened and the process of assessing the damages to property has begun.
Fortunately Richland County participates in the National Flood Insurance program and some of the landowners are covered.
Even though many of the homes are becoming accessible, a few obstacles remain in assessing the damages. Many of the homeowners have not been home for an extensive amount of time and may not be returning soon. Some may not even know their property has been flooded. Secondly, Lower Yellowstone Rural Electric will not turn power on to flooded homes until a licensed electrician has inspected them. Returning power to a flooded property could be hazardous due to wicking on the power lines, which could cause shorts or fires.
The major concern is public health as the water recedes. Landowners could have contaminated wells and backed up septic systems that could threaten the health of individuals & livestock. Those entering flooded areas should wash hands with clean water and soap upon returning from cleanup. Well water should be tested and treated if contamination is found. The Richland County Health Department has water testing kits available and is urging those assisting with cleanup of a flooded area to check their immunization status and update their tetanus vaccine as necessary.