Cold temperatures pose new concern for flood-fatigued communities in New Jersey

Toni Yates Image
Monday, January 15, 2024
NJ residents exhausted by flooding, cold temperatures
Toni Yates has more on storm cleanup efforts from Fairfield.

FAIRFIELD, New Jersey (WABC) -- As some communities in New Jersey continue to clean up from last week's flooding, the next big concern is lingering floodwaters freezing over from bitter cold temperatures.

Four rowboats were tied up along Lane Road in Fairfield, where homeowners there were still waiting for water from the Passaic River to move out.

The river has receded, but it has left pockets of trouble spots like on Riveredge Road, where areas are iced over.

"This morning after we opened up Bloomfield Avenue and Little Falls Road we were just waiting for that to salted and now those are both good to go, our concern now is the snow we're going to get tonight into tomorrow for roads like Riveredge Drive, for example if the water is still up on the roadway, and Horseneck Road also, they're not going to be able to plow that because there's water still on the road," said Fairfield Police Officer Stacy Chiarolanza said.

Towns like Little Falls also have to deal with all the debris left along streets and sidewalks, in addition to what their residents have had to throw out.

"Same as it always was. It's wintertime, it's the first time we've ever had a flood in winter. Usually it's March when we have people without heat," Little Falls resident Bob Dombrowski said.

Red Cross crews are making rounds to see which communities need what in the aftermath of floods and the current cold weather.

"With this kind of cold weather you hate to see anyone displaced, but we are so fortunate we have partners in the community that will offer a facility for us to use as a shelter or even as a warming center -- a place for people to come and charge their electronics if they lost power, but yeah, it's a one, two, three punch," said American Red Cross Regional Chief CEO Rosie Taravella.


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