As St. Maries area residents move back into their flood-stricken homes, they may not be able to use their toilets.
“The lift stations in the Riverdale area in Benewah County are not functioning and probably won’t be for some time, said John Tindall of the Idaho Division of Environmental Quality.
The stations pump sewage to a treatment plant. Tindall urged Riverdale residents to phone Phil Brown at 245-2577 to find out if the system is functioning at their homes.
Tindall is recommending that portable toilets be brought into the neighborhood. People coming in contact with the contaminated flood water should wash their hands frequently, he said, and consider getting tetanus shots.
The Idaho Division of Environmental Quality has established three collection facilities for solid wastes and household hazardous wastes left behind by receding flood waters.
One is located at the Shoshone County transfer station, which is east of Kellogg, just north of Interstate 90. It is open every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The two other collection stations are open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Those are located across from the Third Generation restaurant in Cataldo; and at the Benewah County landfill on State Highway 3, south of St. Maries.
The stations will accept solid wastes such as ordinary garbage, furniture, appliances and wood; household hazardous wastes including used motor oil, car batteries, cleaners with acids or lye, paint or paint thinners, and pesticides and other lawn and garden products.
Leaking containers should be put in plastic bags, and all containers put in cardboard boxes for transport to the collection stations, officials said.
Motorists can expect delays of up to 30 minutes on Idaho Highway 3 north of St. Maries. Traffic is being stopped at milepost 86, according to the Idaho Transportation Department.
Crews are working to rebuild the original clay core in the dike along the St. Joe River. Weather permitting, the work is expected to be completed on Monday.
Idaho Attorney General Alan Lance is advising that flood victims beware of scam artists, including:
Fly-by-night contractors promising immediate, cheap home repair and cleanup. Check references and get more than one written estimate. Get all agreements and guarantees in writing. Check to see if any complaints have been filed with the attorney general’s Consumer Protection Unit (800-432-3545) or the Better Business Bureau.
Fraudulent telemarketers who sometimes call disaster areas to push emergency kits, water testing devices and water filters, perhaps throwing in a prize if the consumer acts quickly.
Phone charities. Appeals for blankets, food and money for flood victims could be bogus.
Government representatives wanting to assist flood victims to qualify for disaster relief payments should be checked out carefully. In other states, people posing as public officials reportedly took “processing fees” and were never seen again.
The American Red Cross is asking that all people affected by the floods check in at the Family Service Centers in Shoshone and Benewah counties.
Those are located at the Pinehurst Country Club Restaurant, No. 9 Country Club Road, 682-3187; and at the Washington Water Power building, College and Sixth streets, in St. Maries, 245-0123.
The Red Cross can provide emergency assistance and cleaning kits.