Flood Resources

Damage and Repairs


If your residence sustained damages:

1. First, contact your insurance company. 

2. Document the damage and keep receipts. Take many photos before and after repairs and cleaning and keep lists of what is damaged or destroyed including belongings and the building.

3. Vermonters with damaged homes should report those damages to Vermont 211 (United Ways of Vermont). This can be done by calling 2-1-1, or visiting https://vermont211.org/resident-form.

4. Chittenden County has received an Individual Assistance disaster declaration. This will allow Vermonters to apply for financial assistance through FEMA if they have necessary expenses or serious needs as a result of the disaster that are not covered by insurance, or you filed an insurance claim but your benefits are not enough to cover your expenses, or your damage was not covered by insurance or other sources. The Individual Assistance Program is not intended to make survivors whole. It is to assist with immediate needs resulting from a disaster.

Assistance can be available for:

  • Rental assistance
  • Lodging expense reimbursement
  • Home repair
  • Direct housing
  • Loss of personal property including, but not limited to furnishings, appliances, essential tools, and assistive equipment that supports daily living activities
  • Medical and Dental services that were necessary because of the storm
  • Child Care costs incurred as a result of the disaster
  • Repair or replacement of vehicles
  • Moving and storage expenses
  • Cleaning and removal of contaminants
  • Other critical needs for those who are displaced for their primary dwelling
  • Crisis counseling
  • Disaster unemployment
  • Disaster Legal Services
  • Disaster Case Management

To apply for disaster assistance under the Individual Assistance declaration download an application at: www.DisasterAssistance.gov. You can also call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-3362.

Disaster Survivor Assistance teams from FEMA will also be visiting those who reported their damage to 211.  

If your business sustained damages or suffered a loss:

1. First, contact your insurance company. 

2. Document the damage and keep receipts. Take many photos before and after repairs and cleaning and keep lists of what is damaged or destroyed including belongings and the building.

3. If your business was damaged, please report your damage to Vermont 211. This can be done by calling 2-1-1, or visiting https://vermont211.org/business-form.

4. If your business suffered loss as a result of the flood, FEMA also works with the Small Business Administration which in some cases can provide additional assistance through low-interest loans. For more information visit www.sba.gov.

For information on farm assistance, please visit the Agency of Agriculture’s website, agriculture.vermont.gov/flood


When returning to your home, if there are repairs needed, see below.

  • Emergency repairs/stabilization to maintain structural integrity are OK and so is debris removal. Take pictures and keep receipts. You may need to get a zoning permit later.
  • Other repairs:
    1. If your property is located in the floodplain:
      • Property owners will need to get a zoning permit to do any repair.
      • Property owners will need to submit contractor quotes/receipts showing project costs to the Zoning Administrator. This information is needed to determine if there is “substantial damage.”
      • Property owners will also need to submit documentation about construction methods/materials/etc.
    2. If your property is located outside of the floodplain:
      • Property owners may need to get a zoning permit to do repairs. Consult your zoning administrator (Amanda Pitts, apitts@miltonvt.gov)  

Assistance with cleaning

To request volunteer help cleaning your home please contact 2-1-1. You may also request assistance from crisiscleanup.org.

FEMA may be able to help with cleanup expenses. Take photos and keep receipts. 

Ensuring that you are safe is the most important part of cleanup. If you have contaminated water, fuels, oils, or other hazardous material, please call the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) at 1-800-641-5005 or 802-828-1138 before continuing.

Health and Safety

Health and safety information is at HealthVermont.gov/Flood

As the State of Vermont continues its floodwater response and recovery efforts, the Department of Health is urging people to know how to keep healthy and safe outside and when returning to flooded homes. 

Vermonters can find flood-related health guidance that includes information and resources in multiple languages at HealthVermont.gov/Flood.


If you’re in a flooded area and get your water from a well or spring, assume your water is contaminated. 

Private water systems exposed to flood water can become contaminated with bacteria, microorganisms and other pollutants from sewage, heating oil, agricultural or industrial waste, chemicals, and other substances that can cause serious illness.

Do not use well water for drinking, cooking, baby formula, washing food or brushing teeth until you have it tested.

Free Drinking Water Test Kits are available for people whose private well or spring water systems have been impacted. Call the Public Health Laboratory at 802-338-4724 to order the appropriate test kits to check for bacteria, chemicals, or other contaminants.

Boiling your water for one minute kills bacteria and other organisms. But do not use or boil untested water that is cloudy, full sediments or smells like fuel or chemicals.

More at HealthVermont.gov/DrinkingWaterFlood.


Heavy rainfall and floods have led to dangerously fast-moving water. People and pets should stay out of any body of water after a flooding event. Even in normal conditions, it’s best to wait 48 hours after a storm to go in the water.

Conditions of high water and strong undercurrents can linger several days after a storm. Even strong swimmers are at high risk of injury or death. Many rivers, ponds, lakes and streams have been contaminated by disease-causing microorganisms, fuel, debris, and wastewater runoff. 

Swimming in contaminated water can result in skin rashes, sore throats, diarrhea or more serious problems from bacterial infection. Unseen hazards and debris are also dangerous for recreational boating.

Pay attention to posted information at beaches and other swim areas.


Check for immediate dangers like downed power lines, gas leaks or damaged fuel tanks. If you smell natural gas (like rotten eggs) or hear hissing, leave the area immediately and call your local utility.

If electrical circuits and electrical equipment have gotten wet, or are in or near water, turn off the power at the main breaker or fuse on the service panel. If you must enter standing water to access the main power switch, then call an electrician to turn it off.

Never use a generator or any gasoline-powered engine inside your home, basement or garage, or less than 20 feet from any window, door, or vent. Be sure it is vented to the outdoors.

Home Clean Up

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has information on safe clean-up practices: CDC.gov/disasters/cleanup/facts.html 

Mold: If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, assume your home has mold. 

  • Wear protective clothing, including masks (N-95) and gloves, when cleaning. 
  • Children, people with breathing problems and people with weakened immune systems should not help clean up after a flood. 
  • Dry your home out. Open doors and windows. You can use fans and dehumidifiers when electricity is safe. 
  • Have your home heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system checked before you turn it on to prevent spreading mold throughout the house.   
  • Clean moldy items that do not absorb water using soap and water (glass, plastic, marble, granite, ceramic tile, metal). Materials that easily absorb water (cushions, mattresses, drywall, carpet, insulation, and ceiling tiles) may need to be thrown away.
  • Launder clothes and smaller fabrics and textiles. Wash all clothes worn during the cleanup in hot water and detergent - keep separate from uncontaminated items.


Food and crops that have come into direct contact with flood waters can make you sick. Don’t eat or drink anything that touched flood water.

Throw away contaminated food, and any perishable foods that have not been refrigerated properly due to power outages. 

People with farms and gardens impacted by floods should wait at least 30 days before replanting to allow the soil to dry out and allow for any disease-causing bacteria in the soil to die off. More information is at Agriculture.Vermont.gov/Flood.

Find more food safety information at healthvermont.gov/food-safety-consumers or email FoodLodging@vermont.gov.


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