I am ashamed to say I haven’t said a word about the devastating flooding in Minot, North Dakota, although I had the perfect connection to the city through blogger, John Carey at SENTRY JOURNAL. There is no way to put into words what has happened to this community. I hope you will watch these videos and give generously if you are capable of doing so. For a second way to help Minot, don’t miss the opportunity to vote for $100,000 to an American park, which with your help will be Minot’s Oak Park (see details below).
Homes damaged 4100, completely or extensively damaged 3100. The damage is expected to total $400 Million dollars. The city has about $45 Million for clean up or to buy-out homeowners. About 20% of Minot homes were underwater, and 12,000 people displaced.
Minot has a history of severe flooding, with the main problem that waters receded exceptionally slowing, so the waters stay, and stay and stay, and people are forced to live elsewhere for long periods.
So with this history, why don’t the people have Federal Flood Insurance? I remember the first home hubby and I bought was not in a flood plain, had never flooded, but was near a flood area. Our mortgage lender insisted we have flood insurance, or no loan. After that, the city began a major flood project and the problem was solved.
In Minot, Federal Flood insurance was once the norm for flood areas, but then…the city got busy and a public works project fixed the flood program, and the government dropped their requirements for Federal Flood Insurance:
After all, the once flood-prone river — known locally as the Mouse [the Souris], after its French name — had seemingly been tamed by public works projects that reshaped the channel, raised the banks and controlled the flow of water.
When the federal government lifted a requirement a decade ago that low-lying valley homes have flood insurance, most residents stopped buying it.
“I didn’t have any concerns,” Dawn Rasmussen, a local real estate agent, said Thursday as she surveyed the flooded city landscape with her husband, Gary, a firefighter, a day after they fled their home. “It was not going to happen to me. I was in complete denial.”
An unprecedented — and still escalating — flood this week quickly overwhelmed those manmade defenses along the Souris, forcing a series of evacuations that displaced more than a quarter of the city’s population…
The revised predictions, which showed the river topping the 130-year-old record level by more than eight feet, sent panic through a city that had believed itself prepared to handle the deluge. There were concerns that the water could destroy secondary defenses the city had built to safeguard critical parts of the infrastructure, like water and sewer facilities and the lone remaining bridge.
But another problem facing residents of Minot is a consequence not of failing to control the river but of decades of doing so successfully: just one in 10 homes in the flood zone still have flood insurance.
So, that’s the story. The first video below shows people moving out of their properties in the little time they had. Then the flood waters come, and then the astonishing aftermath of beautiful homes – home after home, inundated by the undoubtedly dirty waters, filled with snakes and bacteria. Things will never be the same for many Minot residents.
The second video is the aftermath, about a month later. Miles of tidy-looking homes line the streets with stacks of trash piled at the curb. No doubt, unspeakable damage inside.
You can donate to the Minot Red Cross here>> Thanks to John at SENTRY JOURNAL for the videos, for his ongoing updates on this tragedy, and my apologies for not paying attention.
Here’s an easy way for you to help Minot in a big way: Visit this site and vote for Minot to receive $100,000 for an American park. Click the “vote” button on the left. Above the map, where it says “Search for a Park,” type in “Oak Park” and click go. Then click “Vote for this Park.” It’s that easy. This minute Oak Park ranks No. 1, but we need your vote, nevertheless. Others talking about the Coca Cola $100,000 for an American park: Rob Port who lives in Minot atSay Anything Blog, Adrienne’s Corner, and Randy’s Roundtable. Please pass this around to your friends and ask for their vote.
Minot, ND as the flood water engulf the city (video)
Flood Damage in Minot, North Dakota (video)
(Third Photo by Army Sgt. Darron Salzer, National GUard Bureau)