Flooding damages 76 public housing units in Cape Breton

Public housing in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality was hit hard by flooding on the weekend.

Most of the damaged homes are in Glace Bay and Whitney Pier areas

Workers try to drain water from a flooded home on Glencoe Street in Whitney Pier. This was one of 76 buildings owned by public housing that flooded over the weekend. (Joan Weeks/CBC)

Public housing in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality was hit hard by flooding on the weekend.

Heavy rain and melting snow damaged 76 public housing units, in addition to a number of private homes.

Joan McKeough, director of the Cape Breton Island Regional Housing Authority, said staff worked throughout Saturday night and Sunday.

"Staff were out, really, all day until about 11 p.m. They were really focused on stopping the water, installing some sump pumps, using Shop-Vacs to clean up, installing some blowers — so really the immediate work of trying to stop the water and get things as dry as you can and that work really is continuing," she said. 

McKeough said some flooded basements had a few centimetres of water while others had more than 30 centimetres to a metre.

"The more significant area that was impacted was the Whitney Pier area and in Glace Bay and we had about 70 calls from those areas.The majority of flooding was at family homes and we had about six calls from senior residents that live in our apartment complexes," she said.

Two families had to leave their home for one night because of the flooding. 

McKeough said some units have already had furnace burners and hot water tanks replaced.

Now staff will work on removing any water-damaged materials to prevent mould.