RALEIGH, N.C. -- State and federal disaster recovery officials offered information on a range of every-day concerns of disaster victims at Friday morning's daily news briefing.
Here's a rundown of some useful information:
From the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources:
If you depend on a well for your drinking water, you need to disinfect it and get the water tested before you drink it. The Department's customer service center has directions available if you want to disinfect your well, or you can call your local health department for assistance. The Department's customer service number is
Department officials also stress that pregnant women and young infants should not drink boiled water, because boiling concentrates any nitrates that are in the water. They should use bottled water instead.
Department officials also stress that as people clean out after the flooding, they should not leave hazardous chemicals such as drain cleaner, oven cleaner, used paint or paint thinner at the curb with other debris. People should check with their local solid waste agency to find out how to dispose of the chemicals safely.
Four counties - Carteret, Lenoir, Edgecombe and Pitt -- have household hazardous waste collection days scheduled for Oct. 23. Staff with the customer service phone line can provide information on the locations of those collection sites.
Department officials also suggest that state residents with septic systems malfunctioning because of the flooding can get guidance at 1-800-9SEWAGE.
From the United States Environmental Protection Agency:
Environmental Protection Agency officials have been working with the U.S. Coast Guard and state and local governments to assess oil spills and hazardous waste spills caused by Hurricane Floyd. Officials have identified and collected more than 1,300 abandoned fuel tanks, drum and cylinders throughout Eastern Carolina.
Residents and business owners who require technical assistance with hazardous substance containers should call the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources' customer service center at 1-877-623-6748 for guidance.
From the North Carolina Bar Association:
The Young Lawyers Division of the North Carolina Bar Association is offering free legal assistance to disaster victims, both by phone and at disaster recovery centers throughout the state.
Calls for the legal help often relate to property issues, insurance concerns, landlord/tenant problems and employment issues. Those needing legal advice as a result of the disaster can call 1-800-662-7407 and ask for Disaster Legal Services. A legal services attorney will call you back within 48 hours.
From the National Flood Insurance Program:
Officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency remind North Carolinians that for the vast majority of state residents - those who live in the floodplain and outside of it - affordable flood insurance is available. Residents of any community that participates in the National Flood Insurance Program can buy flood insurance, most often through their general insurance agent. The vast majority of North Carolina communities participate in the National Flood Insurance Program.
After a disaster declaration, state and federal disaster assistance programs offer limited aid in helping victims recover; they are only designed to help people start their recovery, said Todd Davison, FEMA's Deputy Federal Coordinating Officer for Mitigation for the North Carolina flooding.
"The only way to totally protect yourself financially is through a policy of flood insurance," Davison says.
People interested in flood insurance information should contact their insurance agent, or call 1-800-427-4661.