Montreal

Help wanted: Flooded Quebec communities plan major clean-up

As homeowners start tearing out waterlogged floors and walls, officials in flood-stricken neighbourhoods are asking volunteers to lend a hand.

Hudson needs volunteers Wednesday, Laval and Île-Perrot hope for help this weekend

Some residents on Île-Mercier have started hauling out debris from their homes, even though garbage trucks still can't cross the island's only bridge, damaged by the flood. (CBC/Charles Contant)

As homeowners start tearing out waterlogged floors and walls, officials in flood-stricken neighbourhoods are asking volunteers to lend a hand. 

"We're just at the early stages," said Itsik Romano, whose basement on Maçons Street in Pierrefonds was almost a metre-deep in water at the peak of the flood.

"I have to rip off everything from the basement, from the floor. I have to throw [out] some furniture."

Romano has a contractor to help with his demolition, but he said others on his street are in need of help.

As well, while hundreds of volunteers showed up to fill and distribute sandbags at the height of the floods, more volunteers are now needed to haul those sandbags away, according to municipal and borough officials. 

"There have been amazing volunteer groups that have helped us a lot," said Romano.

Where you can help

Several municipalities are organizing volunteer crews: 

  • Hudson
    • ​When: Wednesday, May 17 from 9 a.m.
    • Where: Hudson Fire Station, 529 Main Road.
    • What you need to know: Volunteers must be 16 or older and will be provided with masks and t-shirts. Clean-up may continue Thursday, if needed.
  • Île-Bizard
    • ​When: All week, but especially Saturday, May 20.
    • Where: Île-Bizard sociocultural centre, 490 Montée de l'Église.
    • What you need to know: The borough is trying to match volunteers with flood victims who need help. Homeowners in need of helpers or people wanting to volunteer should call (514) 620-7277.
  • Île-Perrot
    • When: Saturday, May 20, from 8 a.m.
    • Where: Tourist information kiosk, 190 Highway 20.
    • What you need to know: Volunteers should register by phone by calling (514) 453-1751 ext. 221. Volunteers must be 16 or older and wear close-toed shoes. The municipality will provide gloves and masks.
  • Laval
    • When: Saturday, May 20 and Sunday May 21, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    • Where: Locations TBA.
    • What you need to know: The City of Laval says volunteers must register in advance by calling (450) 681-6164 ext. 2242 or by sending an email to: bml4@laval.ca​. Volunteers must be 16 or older and in good physical condition, wear close-toed shoes and be available for at least five hours.
  • ​Rigaud
    • A spokesperson for the town of Rigaud said the municipality is currently focused on inspecting homes and has not yet planned a clean-up, although one could be organized by next week. 

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