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Posted on: August 30, 2018

Storm and Flood Cleanup Guidance

Calumet County Public Health is urging local residents to use caution to protect themselves and their families following the storms and recent flooding in our area.

Flood water may be contaminated with bacteria or other hazardous substances. Do not swim or drink from lakes, rivers, or streams, or in other water affected by flooding. Anyone who gets a headache, upset stomach, or flu-like symptoms after being in flood waters should seek immediate medical attention.

"Any private well owner whose well has been flooded should assume that the well is contaminated if flooding covered the well head," said Bonnie Kolbe, RN, Calumet County Health Officer. "Disinfect your well and use bottled water or another safe source of water."

Private well owners can contact Calumet County Land and Water Conservation at (920) 849-1442 for post-flood, fee-exempt well water test kits.The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) also has information on how to care for your well, including disinfectant steps, and a list of licensed well drillers. 

Additional Information about wells after flooding:

Follow these tips to stay safe during flood cleanup:
  • Drain basements slowly. Basements containing standing water should be emptied gradually - no more than 2-3 inches per day. If a basement is drained too quickly, the water pressure outside the walls will be greater than the water pressure inside, which may cause the basement floor and walls to rack and collapse.
  • When in doubt, throw it out! Refrigerated and frozen foods should be inspected, especially if there was a power outage. Any food that was touched by floodwaters - even canned food - should be thrown out.
  • Flooding can cause mold growth. Follow the recommended steps in the link below for cleaning mold growth.
Additional Information about food safety, and mold growth:
Please contact Calumet County Public Health at (920) 849-1432 with additional questions or concerns.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services website has a section on flood hazards and recovery, which is another reliable resource for helpful information. 

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Calumet County Government

206 Court Street
Chilton, WI 53014

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