New Brunswick

Three-quarters of residents happy with emergency response during flood, survey says

The flood of 2018 is an event residents won't soon forget.

Survey results showed 13% of people surveyed were dissatisfied by emergency response during the flood

Westfield Road was washed out by floodwaters in the Saint John neighbourhood of South Bay in May. (Trevor Lyons/CBC)

The flood of 2018 is an event residents won't soon forget.  

Unprecedented water levels forced road closures, including part of the Trans-Canada Highway between Moncton and Fredericton, damaged homes and cottages and displaced more than 1,600 people in many parts of the province.

But a recent online survey done by Corporate Research Associates Inc., based out of Halifax, shows 77 per cent of people surveyed were either "completely" or "mostly satisfied" by the emergency response to the recent flooding event in New Brunswick.

Meanwhile, survey results showed 13 per cent of New Brunswickers are completely or mostly dissatisfied with the emergency response. And 11 per cent of residents don't have an opinion on the matter.

"Despite the devastating floods that hit New Brunswick this spring, residents in the province appear to be satisfied with the emergency response to those floods," said Don Mills, chairman and CEO of Corporate Research Associates, in a statement.

Local residents return from checking on their house surrounded by the waters of the St. John River in Fredericton at the end of April. (Andrew Vaughan/Canadian Press)

"At the same time, there remains a lot of restoration work to be completed in the areas directly affected by the floods."

Whether it was calling in the Armed Forces, more advanced warning, compensation for recreational properties or politicizing a natural disaster, the government's response to variety of subjects was often discussed during and after the flood. 

Leaving home

In Saint John, about 1,900 residents along parts of the St. John River were encouraged to leave their homes this past spring. 

Residents living in flooded areas were either encouraged by the province's Emergency Measures Organization to leave their homes or were escorted out by emergency crews by boat. 

About 60 soldiers provided flood relief support to the New Brunswick government in response to a request from Premier Brian Gallant.

Shots taken over Grand Bay-Westfield by the CBC News Drone 1:26

The troops were army engineers who assessed the damage to roads and bridges from the unprecedented flooding in the southern part of the province.

Survey results are part of the CRA Atlantic Quarterly, a telephone survey of Atlantic Canadians based on a telephone sample of 400 adult New Brunswickers.

The survey was conducted between May 10 and May 28.

The overall results are accurate to within plus or minus 4.9 percentage points, 95 out of 100 times.