The flood waters have receded leaving those affected to head into clean-up mode.

The City of Ottawa issued the following information to assist those in this process.

IMMEDIATE HAZARDS

Mold can spring up within 48-72 hours after water has been introduced into a structure. Mold thrives on moisture to start growing and the spores can easily transfer onto clothing and into your lungs. If you enter a building that has been inundated with water, no matter how little, wear a mask and immediately wash your clothes after leaving. To

find out more about how to properly deal with mold cleanup, go to https://www.cdc.gov/mold/cleanup-guide.html. For information on general cleanup after a flood, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/floods/after.html.

IS MY PROPERTY IN THE FLOODPLAIN?

While the City has not finished analyzing all the properties that were affected, the majority are not classified as being in the floodplain in our official Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) that was effective in May of 2011. As such, the City will not assess these properties for substantial damage, as they are not covered by our regulations. Should a property owner need to know if they are located in the floodplain, they may contact the Community Development Department at 785.229.3620.

If your property is located within the floodplain, the Community Development Department, working with the assistance of the State Floodplain Coordinator, will assist with the process of calculating damage to a structure.

CAN I GET FLOOD INSURANCE IF MY PROPERTY ISN’T IN THE FLOODPLAIN?

Any property owner can get flood insurance. This type of insurance is called a “preferred risk policy”. The policy is relatively inexpensive and a FEMA guide may be found at : https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1544533449232-cf2c5078f666bd92bd2e099cb4a2a0a1/101650_010_FEMA2018_Residential_PRP_85X11_508.pdf.

FILING AN INSURANCE CLAIM AFTER A FLOODING EVENT

Should any of the affected property owners have flood insurance, it is extremely important to get the claim process started immediately. A property owner must file within 60 days of the event or the right to file is void. An adjuster will come out and do an estimate on repairs. Paperwork is required and the property owner must sign this paperwork, even if they don’t agree with the estimate. The reason for this is, if they don’t sign the paperwork, they are not making a valid claim and it will not be filed. The proper process if a property owner doesn’t agree with the estimate is to file an appeal. The following link will provide guidance on how to file a flood insurance claim: https://www.fema.gov/disaster/4277/updates/filing-flood-insurance-claim