Flood damage minimal in most cases (slideshow)
By Jason Stuart
Ranger-Review Staff Writer
Despite the raw power and savagery of last week’s Yellowstone River flood, Glendive and Dawson County escaped with minimal damage to property.
According to Mary Jo Gehnert, Disaster and Emergency Services coordinator for Dawson County, there was “very little infrastructure damage” in Glendive or Dawson County.
One house on Marsh Road was destroyed by the flood, Gehnert said. The home was being rented and Gehnert added she has received a request for assistance from the renter.
Other than that, the brunt of the flood was borne by the county’s river fishing access sites, which were heavily damaged and have been closed down by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and by Glendive ABC Baseball’s complex at Toepke Park.
ABC Baseball has requested that local businesses provide donations to help fund restoration of the fields and facilities there.
Pretty much everything else came out of the flood largely unscathed, however.
The Buffalo Rapids Irrigation District didn’t suffer any damage to its pumps or infrastructure, according to manager Mike Carlson.
“We were spared any kind of damage,” Carlson said. “We were very lucky.”
County roads also escaped largely unharmed.
“Our flood damage was pretty minimal,” said county road supervisor Joe Sharbono.
Marsh Road, which is a state road until it turns to gravel, got the worst of the flood, but according to Montana Department of Transportation District 4 manager Shane Mintz, the overall damage to the road wasn’t that severe.
“We had a few places where at the edge of the road where the swirling waters washed out a bit (under the road),” Mintz said. “But I don’t think it was too bad.”
Mintz pointed out that MDOT only ended up hauling about 40 yards of fill material out to Marsh Road for repairs.
“When it was flooding, you never know what you can end up with until the water recedes,” Mintz said. “I’d say we were relatively fortunate, it could have been worse.”
Gehnert agreed the biggest impact from the flood is the long work of cleaning up ahead for people with riverside property.
“It is devastation for people who own land along the river. They have weeks of work ahead picking up garbage and limbs,” she said. “That’s never a pleasant thing, but it’s just one of the perks of living on the river.”
She added that anyone who has needs or requires help as a result of the flood should not hesitate to call her.
“Anyone with any concerns can contact me, and I can see what I can do for them,” Gehnert said.
Reach Jason Stuart at email@example.com.