The Cayuga County Office of Emergency Services is seeking the public's help to document flooding damage from the July 1 storm that hit the southern end of the county with particular ferocity.
Niel Rivenburgh, deputy director of the office, said the state Office of Emergency Management from the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services began conducting a public assistance assessment Tuesday and will be in the area until at least Sunday. The state plans to conduct individual assessments for homeowners, small businesses and the like sometime Thursday or Friday.
Anyone from the public who suffered damage from the storm — flooded basements, loss of property, damage to heating and cooling systems, etc. — should email email@example.com. Rivenburgh said residents should include their name, contact information, physical address where the damage occurred and any details or cost information. People may send photos, too.
That information will be given to the state office so assessors know exactly where to go to conduct surveys and make an account.
"We can give them some focus points to make direct contact," Rivenburgh said. "I don't want anybody to be left out of the mix because they didn't know these people were going to be there Thursday or Friday. I don't want them to get missed."
The assessments will allow the county to document how much damage the storm did financially to see if it's eligible for state or federal disaster funding.
With 13 fire departments providing mutual aid to the Moravia area on July 1, Rivenburgh said they helped pump more than 130 basements. A Moravia apartment building was also evacuated, displacing about 40 people. Towns and villages are still grappling with road and infrastructure damage.
The state plans to survey an area extending from the towns of Owasco and Fleming on south.
The damage email, Rivenburgh added, may be used to report incidents separate from the July 1 flood, but the county is focused on that event for now.
"Capturing everything we can capture is of paramount importance," he said.