Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Artemis@BC, Jun 21, 2013.
Oh my gosh. My heart goes out to all the people in Calgary. Those photos are really eye-opening.
Ok, they did NOT need this: a train carrying diesel (maybe) derailed on a bridge over the Bow. Looks like they may be close to getting it under control, but the folks in the area could have done without another big scare.
What the Hell is wrong w/CP? I know they want to get the freight moving, but wouldn't common sense kick in here too? I just...mindboggling and I can't blame the Mayor for being pissed about it all.
Some residents of High River will get to go to their homes tomorrow. Other areas are still under water, and it may take several weeks before some people are allowed back in due to the danger. The provincial government has taken over the emergency management of the town.
One of my daughter's friends and her family had been living in her parents' basement in High River before the flood. They were one of the first families allowed back in yesterday. They've lost everything that was in the basement. To add insult to injury, some asshole stole her laptop out of their vehicle where they had been staying, and every photo she'd taken of their one-year-old son was on that laptop.
More people are being allowed back into town today. Many from yesterday and today have homes that have been designated uninhabitable. The province is building a temporary housing complex at the south of Calgary for people from High River who cannot live in their homes.
In other news, the Calgary Food bank is asking for donations to help keep up with the demand from people who have been affected by the flooding.
Pictures of High River flooding
((Really's daughter's friends)) That is the lowest of the low.
Just back from spending the weekend in Calgary. It was very surreal to drive into the city through the burbs, where there isn't a shred of evidence any flooding ever occurred -- just business as usual up there. I didn't end up in any of the hard-hit Calgary neighbourhoods, so didn't see the destruction there. The volunteer efforts are so coordinated that they were asking people not to just drive into those neighbourhoods; transit was taking people from Mount Royal University into the affected neighbourhoods to help in an organized manner.
Instead, a friend and I drove out to Bragg Creek (maybe 30 min? west of Calgary) to help there. Very organized volunteer effort there as well. We checked in at the Response Center, and were assigned jobs as needed. We ended up helping at the burn site (where people were bringing tuck-loads and trailers full of natural wood like trees, branches), cleaned off a guy's mud-caked deck/patio, and ended the day helping out at the dump, where volunteers were needed to help unload trash from vehicles. There was a steady stream of people coming in with everything from furniture to lumber to soaked clothing, paper, photos, etc. Some items were so caked in mud that they were completely unrecognizable. And HEAVY.
The second day, we helped sort and haul a pile of wood that appeared to be a mixture of falled trees/branches and a huge wooden fence that had been taken out by the diverted river. It took several hours, but with lots of helping hands, we got the job done. We found out that the restaurant we were working next to had just been sold 3 days prior to the flood. It luckily didn't suffer major damage, and the sale is still good. However, it was purchased by a man who owns another restaurant in town that was hit very hard, and he also happens to be the man who owned the home you may have seen go floating down the river and crash into a bridge, on Youtube.
Everyone we encountered was tired, but in good spirits, and very appreciative for the help. We were thanked endlessly for coming out from Calgary to help, since so many city-dwellers do go out to that area to enjoy activities like hiking and biking.
Siksika Nation is a different story. A friend of mine was there on the weekend, and they are in dire need of supplies and assistance. Volunteering out there is a bit tricky because there are several health risks, currently (air and water quality). Even after volunteering in Bragg Creek, we were told to make sure we showered thoroughly and checked our bodies for any cuts and scrapes, since flood waters are nasty and can carry all kinds of toxins.
I have a friend who's on the coordination end of the Siksika cleanup. It's not pretty. Even before the flooding conditions were far from ideal on the reserve. It continues to be a national source of shame and embarrassment. But when something like this happens ... well, you know how when an earthquake or tsunami hits a developing country and you see how the destruction is 10 times worse in an area where people have so little? And this is Canada.
Cudos to you, luna_skater, for your cleanup efforts, I'm sure they were greatly appreciated.
It was announced yesterday that High River is open to volunteers to come in without passes to help with clean up efforts. Officials asked that people bring their own supplies with them (boots, masks, rubber gloves, mops, etc) and check in at the welcome centre at the rodeo grounds. The outpouring of support has been fabulous!
luna_skater that is so awesome of you
Mike Holmes apparently tweeted earlier today that he is in High River and ready to help. That's gotta help chase some of the low-life wannabe contractors out of town!
Also, Rush has had to move their July 24 concert from the Saddledome in Calgary. They're going to Red Deer, and all the proceeds from the concert will be going to the Alberta Flood Relief. Very classy!
Oh, and TD Meloche Mennox (something like that) insurance had previously been denying sewer backup claims saying it was caused by overland flooding. After some public shaming in the media (one person videoed her meeting with the adjuster -- with his permission), they have reconsidered. RBC Insurance did the same about a week ago or so. The Alberta Motor Association has also posted on their website that they are reevaluating some claims.
People in another area that was badly flooded were allowed back today.
Sadly, the High River Museum has lost a large part of their collection -- it had been stored in the basement, and after sitting for two weeks, there's just no way they can recover some of the artifacts.
ETA: The road has been repaired between Black Diamond and Turner Valley. The campground that was beside the river is completely gone though, and water remains an issue -- Black Diamond's water treatment plant was rendered unusable during the flood, and 2 of the 3 wells that serve Turner Valley were badly damaged. There's enough water in the TV reservoir for just over a month. There's a temporary distribution line running from Turner Valley to Black Diamond, but there are still severe water restrictions in the area and a state of local emergency until they can get the water supply working again. Daughter says in spite of the water emergency, some idiots are still out powerwashing their driveways. The mind boggles at such selfish stupidity.
Benefit concert for Alberta Flood Aid to be held at McMahon Stadium in Calgary on August 15. Tickets $30.
Thanks for all the updates!
I admire all of you who are involved in the relief/long-term clean-up effort.
Hope they make lots of money to help!