Oswego County Public Information Office, 46 East Bridge St., Oswego, NY 13126

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May 26, 2017

Flooding Assistance Updates -

Oswego County Health Department Offers Well Water Testing for Flood Victims

OSWEGO COUNTY - The Oswego County Health Department is reminding people who live in areas affected by the Lake Ontario flooding to disinfect and test their wells before using them.

Natalie Roy, principal public health sanitarian for the Oswego County Health Department, said people should avoid using water from private wells for drinking or cooking until it is determined to be safe for consumption. After an initial assessment and any needed repairs, the well should be flushed and disinfected.

Free Sampling -

The health department is offering free coliform bacteria sampling to flood victims. Testing kits may be picked up at the department's Environmental Health Division, 70 Bunner St., Oswego, or mailed upon request. The water sample must be delivered to the health department the same day the sample is taken. Samples are accepted Monday through Thursday between 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Samples are not accepted on a holiday or the day before a holiday. No written test results are provided.

For more information about the testing process or to request a bacteria sampling kit, call the Environmental Health Division weekdays at (315) 349-3557 or healthdept@oswegocounty.com.

Protective Masks -

Flood victims are also advised to wear an N95 disposable mask to protect themselves from mold and dust when working in flood-impacted buildings.

An N95 mask is a disposable safety device that covers the nose and mouth and helps protect the wearer from breathing in some hazardous substances. The department has delivered a supply of disposable safety masks to town clerks in Sandy Creek, Richland, Mexico, New Haven, Scriba and Oswego. N95 masks are also available by contacting the Environmental Division of the health department. Although the N95 mask resembles a paper dust mask, officials caution that the paper dust mask offers much less protection.

"An N95 mask protects people from breathing in small particles in the air such as dust and mold," said Roy. "It is designed to filter out at least 95 percent of the dust and mold in the air. N95 masks don't protect against chemical vapors, gases, carbon monoxide, gasoline, asbestos, lead or low oxygen environments."

Mobile Command Center in Mexico May 27 -

The NYS Emergency Mobile Command Center will be in Oswego County this Saturday, May 27, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., again at the NYS Department of Transportation Maintenance Center at 5846 Scenic Avenue (Route 3), Mexico.

Those affected by the high water levels of Lake Ontario may also call the New York State flood assistance hotline at 1-866-244-3839 for the latest flooding forecast, help with flood mitigation measures such as sandbags, and for technical assistance regarding on-site repairs to their property.

Sea Grant - Cornell Partner on Survey -

In addition, New York Sea Grant has awarded rapid response funding to Cornell University to develop and conduct a standardized high water impact survey in the areas along southern and eastern Lake Ontario.

The project will provide a standardized method to collect data on the impacts of high water levels on waterfront properties. The information will be used to identify areas that are most vulnerable to high water levels in the future and to inform future community flood risk planning.

The survey was pilot tested in the Sodus Bay area of Wayne County and will be made available through municipality email lists and New York Sea Grant social media to property owners in communities along southern and eastern Lake Ontario. Survey responses will be accepted through Aug. 31, 2017.

Anyone interested in taking the survey may access it at https://cornell.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6RNKD5WAM0hz3U1 or contact Mary Austerman at 315-331-8415 or mp357@cornell.edu.

Links -

Several resources for flood recovery information, clean-up and home repairs are posted on the Oswego County government website at http://www.oswegocounty.com/.

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