The Aftermathof the Flood
- A personal experience -
On June 20, Lynn Edmunds awoke at 5 am to get ready for work and by 5:30 her life had changed. Edmunds received a call from her neighbor letting her know that her house was in trouble as the near by creek was blocked and flooding. She quickly drove to Lyons Creek only to see a huge pile of logs blocking the bridge with water beginning to spill out onto the road. Edmunds notes, “In previous years there was always a backhoe parked and manned at the Creek as a log blockage happens during a heavy rain fall. I did not see anyone from municipality there at this time only the Crowsnest Taxi Cab driver taking pictures”.
According Edmunds by 7:00 am the water was filling the street and pouring into the underground garage of my neighbour across the street. “The neighbours beside me and both across the street received sewage back up because all the sewers were full. My basement was the last one flooded. My basement is only a storage area and all my stuff was in Rubbermaid tubs so I thought I would be OK. Unfortunately the backup sewage came in with such a force that they were knocked over and the lids popped off throwing everything into the dirty water”.
Edmunds purchased a sump pump and proceeded to try to pump out the water. She called the Emergency Fire Department noting that, “at one point there was the gas smell in the street. All gas and electricity had to be turned off, because my neighbour’s gas stove floated and ripped open a gas line, and of course many electric outlets etc. were under water. Because the electricity was turned off, unfortunately no sump pumps would work so we couldn’t do anything more at the time”.
When Edmunds called and advised her Insurance Company about the flood it took, “two weeks for them to get back to me and it was a gentlemen from Lethbridge Claimspro who came and did the inspection.
In the meantime I continued to clean my basement and haul everything to a container that the Municipality had placed on Main Street”.
Edmunds noted, “as soon as the electricity was turned on Morency Plumbing were very expedient and came to repair/turn on everyone’s heating and hot water where ever they could. They fixed my hot water tank but could not fix my furnace because it is an old coal heater that was converted to gas”.
Edmunds continued to call her Insurance Agent in Calgary every morning and according to her never received a reply. “I believe it was around July 25 that I eventually called the Claims Supervisor and left a message that my basement needed to be cleaned. I had done the best I could but I needed some qualified people to come in and complete it.” The Insurance Agent called within hours that same day and said that she did not believe that she could cover us, as it was high water levels that were the cause of the flood. “I told her that yes I agree but it was sewer backup because it had no place to go. She said that she wanted to send a plumber to my house with the Inspector to try to identify where the water came from. That was on July 30. I have not heard a word from them since.”
This is one account from a resident in the Pass as a result of the flood. I have to ask the question, if this is one here, how many in the province are getting treated the same way?
It is time for the government to ante up and help those in need. I don’t understand why some people are getting coverage and others nothing at all.
I suggest that the people in the province band together and lobby our government to intervene on behalf of these poor people who have lost everything.
During the flood and immediately after people were vocal and sympathetic.
What those affected now need is for us to stand behind them and fight with them even long after the flood happened because the damages are long term.