Fort Fairfield is one of the towns with the most damage done to it’s roads from the flooding two weeks ago. It’s certainly not as bad as the devastating floods of 1994, but the repairs are costing the town a pretty penny.
A piece of hot top laying in a field used to be part of a road a few feet away. The entire chunck of it was washed away in the height of the April flooding. The McCray Flatts on the Russel Road is one of many roads to suffer a blow from flooding and run off water, and now the repair efforts are suffering a blow in terms of cost.
Fort Fairfield Town Manager Mike Bosse says, “A preponderance of the work that needs to be done and the cost associated with that is going to be labor – our total bill we’re expecting it to be somewhere around 46 thousand.”
The estimate of 46 thousand dollars does include the material and equipment for the road repairs. It’s a hefty price tag but it’s still no enough to qualify for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Fort Fairfield Fire Chief Mike Jalbert, “In order to qualify in the county, we have to reach a total of 248 thousand dollars, and then the state also has to reach 1.8 million dollars to be able to qualify for the declaration for FEMA.”
It’s not just roads that were damaged – look at this gap. There used to be a bridge here for pedestrians to cross the river. It was washed away and town officials believe it’s somewhere downstream. Whether it’s going to be located and re-installed, or rebuilt from scratch, it’s going to count towards the expenses and labor of the towns public works department.
Bosse, “Public works has a full array of equipment that they use – graders and back hoe’s and front end loaders and dump trucks so typically they can handle any repairs that they have and if they have to go outside typically we use a local contractor.”
Several other roads in Fort Fairfield remain with washed out shoulders, culverts, and other damages, but the town is on the road to recovery.