GLEN HAVEN, Colo. (CBS4) – Residents living near burn scars continue to dig out of messy washouts and mudslides. Now leaders are hoping to secure aid that will sustain affected communities for years to come.
“The damage that is done is unbelievable, I mean it’s worse than the 13,” said Dave Ries, referring to the devastating flooding in 2013.
Inside Glen Haven, residents have been diligently repairing roads, but one big storm and they find themselves stranded again, unless they have equipment that can bridge a rushing creek.
“The culvert is now 300 yards downstream,” Ries explained.
He’s one of the residents who has lost access to his house by car. He recalls it wasn’t this bad until the Cameron Peak Fire.
“I know our neighbors are talking about having to rebuild his culvert and he’s talking about $40,000,” he said.
Larimer County Commissioner Jody McNally knows the residents are responsible for private roads, but multiple repairs have drained their ability to keep rebuilding.
“Black Creek is not in its former channel and that is now where the road is,” she said during a tour near Black Creek.
She’s now working to set up a hub that would connect neighbors with resources from the state and federal government.
“But that’s not how the funding and grants work, they just look at the fire is over. So we have to start rethinking about when a disaster like this happens, kind of a Western model that we have years of recovery afterward,” she explained.
This week the county will be holding a work session to study the damage, and how to help communities recover from burn scar flooding.
“Like I said, it’s not just me and my wife. You’re talking about hundreds of people,” Ries added.