Assessment of flooding damage continues as evacuees remain at emergency shelter

October 10, 2018 - 7:51 am

Over the weekend, the Tohono O’odham Nation Office of Emergency Management completed 50 home damage assessments within Districts impacted by Tropical Storm Rosa, including Gu Vo (11 homes), Pisinemo (17), Sif Oidak (20), and Hickiwan (2). Preliminary infrastructure assessments were also conducted by the Nation’s Planning Department, Natural Resources Department, and Tohono O'odham Utility Authority for public buildings and tribal utility systems. Damage assessments will continue in the coming days, including road assessments and comprehensive cost estimates.

An emergency shelter in Sells remains active for evacuees from the impacted communities and continues to be managed by the American Red Cross, tribal department personnel, and local volunteers. The shelter has recently received donations of water, food and clothing items, and minimal home items. Donations will continue to be accepted to support over 40 community members in need of provisions while in the shelter, as well as home recovery materials.

Individuals interested in providing a donation for the emergency shelter or home recovery efforts are asked to please contact Donna Estrada at (520) 993‐1079. Those interested in volunteering to support emergency shelter, home repair, and mitigation efforts should click the following link to the volunteer intake form: https://bit.ly/2NvV178.

Monetary donations are also being accepted to defray the costs incurred during this emergency. The Tohono O'odham Nation is eligible to receive charitable contributions that are deductible for Federal income, estate and gift tax purposes. Monetary donations may be made online at http://www.tonation‐nsn.gov/onlinemonetary‐donation‐portal/. Checks and money orders can be made payable to the Tohono O'odham Nation and mailed to P.O. Box 837, Sells, AZ 85634. Attn: Tropical Storm Rosa.

The U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) has been closely monitoring the status of Meneger's Dam. Equipment is being deployed to pump the lake and lower the water level safely, with two pipes installed over the weekend.

To stabilize the dam’s earthen berm, over 80 volunteers including tribal department personnel, correctional facility trustees, American Red Cross, and local volunteers also assisted with a sandbagging operation. More than 1,000 bags were prepared Sunday and hauled to the crest of the dam on Monday. The general public continues to be urged to stay away from the Meneger’s Dam area for the time being due to safety concerns.

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