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No Simple Answers At Larimer County Evacuation Information Meeting

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Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith at the meeting (credit: CBS)

Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith at the meeting (credit: CBS)

LOVELAND, Colo. (CBS4) – A meeting was held in Larimer County for the flood victims Friday night and the community found there are no simple answers to their questions.

Larimer County is the last part of the state still waiting to hear from people. There are 82 people unaccounted for and 367 people have decided not to evacuate their homes despite the fact there are no roads now leading in or out.

The people at the meeting had two questions. One was “How is my home?” The other one was “When can I go back?” The problem with those questions is they don’t come with simple answers and that is what officials tried to explain. If there’s one thing the residents wanted, it was hope that their home is okay.

“We don’t know what’s there, what’s not there, what treasures are gone,” a woman said.

“It’s a scary place. I don’t know what kind of damage it has,” a man said.

The idea of the evacuation information meeting was to let people know the reality even if their home still stands.

“I look at people who are going to be out for undetermined periods of time,” Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith said.

Smith showed video of the Big Thompson Canyon and talked about the damaged roads and showed pictures from the ground. The Colorado Department of Transportation says contractors are on scene and work is underway.

“Where we can coordinate opening up detour routes, temporary routes, we will build, obviously, gravel roads to help get access,” Ashley Mohr with CDOT told the attendees.

The recovery is going to take a long time and for the people impacted it is a new patience. They did, however, learn that there is help.

“It’s a fact, Larimer County is here to help you recover and put your lives back together,” said Suzanne Bassinger, Larimer County Recovery Manager.

The people say they are “mountain strong” and they plan to prove it.

Because of all the road closures there has been a lot of heavy traffic on Interstate 25 and Highway 85. CDOT addressed that at the meeting and says they are looking at ways to ease the congestion.

Colorado Floods: How To Help

The recent floods are impacting families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.

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