Worst Flooding In 2 Decades, Chaumont Residents Say

Date: May 1, 2017

CHAUMONT, NY (WWNY) – It’s a race against rising water in Chaumont, where many residents along the shoreline are trying protect their homes any way they can.

“I’ve lived here in Chaumont for 19 years and this is definitely the worst I’ve ever seen,” Fire Chief Fred Jackson said.

The water keeps coming. Residents and volunteers from several fire departments are trying to find a way to protect waterfront properties on Chaumont’s Water Street the best they can.

But the water is being relentless.

“We’re all out here as a community tonight trying to put the sand bags in and trying to help out the neighbors as much as possible so we can limit the damage,” resident Jeff Froelick said.

A large team worked Monday night to put sandbags down to protect homes, but it was hard when just a few minutes goes by and bags are already covered with water.

It was enough to make volunteers wonder if they were fighting a losing battle.

“At this point it seems like it, but we’re going to give it an ‘E.’ ‘E’ for effort,” Jackson said. “That’s all we can do. If we can save what we can save, we’ve done our job.”)

National Weather Service forecasters say it could get worse. There’s a lake shore flood waring that goes into effect at 4 p.m. Tuesday for Jefferson and Oswego counties. It lasts through 4 .m. Wednesday.

The town of Lyme is handing out sandbags, but people are being asked to take only what they need.

“Our main priority is structures, homes garages, boathouses,” Lyme town Supervisor Scott Aubertine said. “I’m asking people to be frugal with the sandbags they take and to really consider that there may be someone in worse shape than them.”

There’s a silver lining for those that need help: your neighbors have your back.

“Please call the department or the town super and let’s get them taken care of,” Jackson said.

Inmates at Cape Vincent Correctional Facility have been tasked with helping out by preparing 500 sandbags to keep rising waters at bay.