PHILLIPS — Town officials are taking a proactive approach in dealing with the possibility of spring flooding, said Town Manager Maureen Haley. “We are not looking to stir a panic, just want to make sure folks take the time to prepare and be safe,” she said.

On Thursday, March 14, Tim Hardy, Amanda Simoneau and S. Clyde Ross of Franklin County Emergency Management met with Haley, Phillips’ Emergency Management Director Ken Ziglar, Road Commissioner Dan Worcester, Fire Chief Jim Gould, Assistant Chief Paul Hudson, Maine School Administrative District 58 representative Scott Lehay, and selectmen Ray Gaudette and Nicholas Caton to address a potential flooding issue.

The town is situated on the banks of the Sandy River and several of its tributaries.

“We are working at getting the word out to folks that there is a possibility that we could have more spring flooding than usual due to the snow pack and ice conditions,” said Haley. “We discussed the process we would follow should we find ourselves with flooded roadways. We familiarized ourselves with each other and offered ideas of what approaches to the situation would be enacted.”

Ross provided a sheet with preparation guidelines of things that can be done to ready the household for possible flooding and power outages, said Haley.

Suggestions provided on the sheet are:


  • Know alternative travel routes to places you have to go.
  • Check basement sump pumps to be sure they are in working order, have adequate power and clear exit pipes.
  • Have an emergency call list available with important numbers such as a plumber, electrician, carpenter, fuel dealer and insurance agent.
  • Have adequate cash on hand.
  • Make sure vehicles have adequate fuel.
  • Listen to the TV and radio, or check the internet for the most updated weather news and follow evacuation directions, if they are given.
  • Make sure you have adequate medications on hand and check with relatives or friends who may need assistance.
  • Never drive through high water on the roadways and pay attention to signs alerting of closed roads.
  • If there are ice dams, water can rise quickly so pay close attention to media broadcasts.
  • If you have and use a generator, don’t operate it inside any buildings. Check to make sure it is in working order before it is needed. Make sure it has fresh fuel and the proper electrical connections.
  • Moving water has a great force and can move a vehicle or small buildings easily. Pay attention to all rivers and streams.
  • Be sure to have a personal “go bag” ready in case you have to leave your residence in a hurry.
  • Keep in mind water is cold this time of year. If you are exposed to it for any length of time, hypothermia might be an issue.

A notice has been posted throughout town asking those that observe rapidly rising water or roadway damage to call 911.

“The notice also reminds people to respect road barriers and cones,” Haley added. “They are placed there for the safety of the driver. No driver should attempt to cross a roadway that is under water.”  

“It is my hope that we don’t need to deal with flooding issues at all but it is better to be prepared,” Haley added.

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