PANTHER, W.Va. — It’s taking a multi-agency effort to help residents of McDowell County recover after a flood ripped through the community of Panther last week.
Dozens of people were impacted by the high water caused by storms that rolled through Wednesday night into Thursday morning. Bull Creek came out of its banks damaging homes and roads.
West Virginia American Red Cross Executive Director Erica Mani said they had teams on the ground with their emergency response vehicles or ERTs within hours of the disaster.
“(We’re) making sure that those who have been effected are getting the supplies and the food that they need and the clean water they desperately need,” said Mani.
Twenty Red Cross volunteers have been manning the ERTs providing meals for those who no longer have the ability to cook in their own kitchens.
“We’ve delivered 2,000 meals and over 10,000 snacks to the residents of Panther in McDowell County,” according to Mani.
One of the biggest concerns according to J.J. Rose with the McDowell County Health Department is the water situation.
“For those individuals whose well was covered by water we are giving out information on how first to disinfect those wells to hopefully get anything that got in there. We are going to set up a schedule to go get test samples for those wells,” said Rose.
You can get more information about that by calling the McDowell County Health Department.
Another area of concern according to Rose is making sure that everyone who needs one, has an updated tetanus shot.
“Anybody who’s been in the flood water, that’s been exposed with a scratch, a wound, anything that can get in. Plus if you don’t have a complete series of that within the last five years, we encourage you to get that, especially if you’ve been in the water,” stressed Rose.
The Health Department has already given out more than 50 tetanus shots. They’ll be doing it again Monday at Betty’s Diner starting at 1 p.m.
The state DOH has estimated road and bridge damage from the flood at $500,000.