The aerial photos, waterlogged basements and mini geysers in the middle of city streets left no doubt about the severity or scope of last week’s storms and resulting floods.
But numbers also are starting to roll in to illustrate what kind of toll the suburbs took. And in some cases, they’re staggering.
In Lake County alone, at least 3,200 properties sustained flood damage despite the more than 430,000 sandbags deployed to protect them. Libertyville High School closed for two days so four pumps could remove a whopping 800,000 gallons of water from its basement.
And Naperville appears to be the hardest hit community in DuPage County, reporting $702,000 in cleanup costs eligible for federal reimbursement. Countywide, officials put the figure at $4.18 million and climbing.
“We have a great shot at receiving the disaster declaration, which will provide our communities with the help that they so desperately need,” said David Gervino, emergency management coordinator for DuPage’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
Government agencies could be eligible for up to 75 percent of expenses for employee overtime and costs of operating equipment such as boats, public works vehicles, fire trucks and police cars.
While DuPage already met its threshold, the state still must surpass $17.6 million in total flood damage costs for local governments to qualify for federal money.
Officials are confident that will occur, especially considering the Fox River and Chain O’ Lakes systems didn’t even crest until Monday. The city of Des Plaines is farther along in the cleanup process, reopening the last of its impassable roads on Thursday, while Lake County expects certain spots to stay at “major flood” levels through the weekend.
As for comprehensive damage estimates across the entire Chicago area, those don’t exist just yet.
Counties are being asked to report damage estimates to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency next week and municipalities the week after.
In the meantime, here’s a look at numbers that provide a look at the good, the bad and the ugly as the suburbs continue to dry out.
Ÿ 880,000: Sandbags delivered by the state including 275,000 filled by 2,200 Illinois Department of Corrections inmates
Ÿ 3,800: Meals, snacks and beverages provided by the Salvation Army to first responders and flood victims through its mobile canteens
Ÿ 200: People who took advantage of Chicago-area Red Cross shelters daily
Ÿ 1: UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter provided by the Illinois National Guard so the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers could survey the integrity of flood control systems and infrastructure along the Des Plaines and Little Calumet rivers.
Ÿ 75,000: Sandbags used in Des Plaines
Ÿ $6,000: Amount Wheeling spent on 1,300 gallons of fuel and 225,860 pounds of sand
Ÿ 2,000: Damaged Des Plaines homes and businesses
Ÿ 1,185: Calls received by Rolling Meadows-based J.C. Restoration Inc. from residential and commercial flood victims
Ÿ 825: Hours worked by Wheeling public works crews, most of them overtime
Ÿ 88: Tons of sand distributed by Cook County including 60,000 sandbags to Des Plaines
Ÿ 5: Hanover Park crews sent to Des Plaines with three trucks through a public works mutual aid agreement
Ÿ $4.18 million and climbing: Cleanup costs in DuPage County
Ÿ 1,800: Calls fielded by the city of Aurora including 135 for flooded basements or sewer backups
Ÿ 300: Damaged properties in Wheaton
Ÿ $4.8 million: Total cleanup costs estimated by 43 Lake County entities
Ÿ 430,000: Sandbags filled and stacked to protect Lake County homes
Ÿ 3,200: Damaged Lake County properties
Ÿ 600: Flooded homes in Fox Lake despite more than 30,000 sandbags provided by the village
Ÿ 100,000: Sandbags prepared by McHenry County
Ÿ 53,000: Meals Fifth Third Bank will donate to the Geneva-based Northern Illinois Food Bank to help affected families
Ÿ 617: McHenry County homes touched by water
Ÿ 200: McHenry County homes damaged enough to qualify for federal reimbursement
Ÿ 20: Algonquin homes damaged
Ÿ 1: St. Charles home forced to evacuateCopyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.