Mattoon seeking relief for residents with flood damage

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MATTOON, Ill. (WAND)- Only puddles remain of Tuesdays flood in Mattoon. However, the community is still recovering.

"It's never happened before,” said Irene Towel whose home was damaged by the flood.  “We've been here for 48 years, and we've never had anything like this.”

Irene Towel's home had some of the worst flooding in the Mattoon area. Her carpet had to be torn out of her home, and two of her vehicles are now totaled due to water damage. This disaster is something she never thought would happen.

"A disaster can happen very fast and this is a disaster,” added Irene.

Parts of the Mattoon community were covered in feet of water on Tuesday causing severe damage to dozens of homes.

"It's really kind of a grueling process,” says Matt Fredrick the city of Mattoon inspector regarding surveying the area.  “We've got a good idea as far where the flooding was, but you aren't always catching people home and you don't know the extent of the damage. For some people, it may look like it got in their house and it didn't. For others, you know it may not have looked like it got in the house, but it surprisingly did."

City officials are surveying the area with hopes they can receive some flood relief through either state or federal dollars.

"We are trying to get these folks some assistance is really what this is about,” added Matt. “This area is not even in a floodplain, so it shouldn't flood but you know here is where we find ourselves in a flood without flood insurance. Standard home insurance doesn't typically cover a flood of this magnitude."

As for some residents, the damage is so bad they have to start over.

"Everything was damaged,” added Irene.  “All of our furniture, everything on the floor it soaked up water and it just pretty much ruined everything. I just hope we can get flood relief or disaster relief, and I hope they will consider this a disaster because it really is other people have been affected to."

The City of Mattoon is asking anyone with flood damage to report it to the city by filling out a flood survey which estimates the amount of damage done to one’s home. Those surveys can be found at the city office which is located 208 North 19th Street in Mattoon. You can also receive more information by calling the city office at 217-235-5654

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