Flood Clean-Up and Health Safety Information

Follow directions in utilizing drain plugs to reduce flooding in the residence, specifically basements or lower levels. If advised by local officials plug all drains in the lower level or basement of your home. In some newer homes backflow check valves were installed and plugging drains is not necessary.

Cleanup and disinfecting flooded homes or leaking basements:
• Expel, pump, shop vac, or drain water
• Remove and discard water damaged sheetrock, carpet, furniture and other moisture absorbing non cleanable materials

• Sanitize nonporous surfaces of structure and furniture, such as hard wood, hard plastic, concrete, glass & metal, with a sanitizing solution of one tablespoon bleach per gallon of water

• Dry area ASAP with dehumidifiers, AC, fans, open windows, etc.
• Bring moisture levels down to 15% or less in wood structure & studs to be covered when remodeling

Criteria to indentify a mold problem and methods to properly address the issue if mold exists
• Look for any discolored patch such as black or green on sheetrock or wood and possibly the presence of a musty earthy odor

• In order to grow mold need a source of moisture so find and eliminate any source of moisture, e.g., plumbing leaks, improperly vented clothes dryer, poorly sealed exterior windows

Provide the proper methods for sandbag disposal and safe methods for utilizing the sand, if not severely contaminated. Sand from sandbags should not be used in sandboxes or under playground equipment but may be used for construction or backfill projects around the home

Rural areas have unique concerns during floods relative to private well and onsite sewer systems. Our office can also be contacted relative to these issues. We have the lab capacity to test your private wells and advise on disinfection if needed.

You can stop by our laboratory located at 435 14th Ave S and pickup a sterile sample container or call 701-298-6986.

We are also the Local Environmental Health for the Southeast Region of North Dakota and can be contacted on any of these flood related issues. Call 701-476-6729. When you contact this number, please state your specific concern and location and it will be directed appropriately.

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