EMERGENCY FUNDING IS RECEIVED
Courtesy U.S. Forest Service
The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest sustained an estimated $10 million in damages during the storm event July 11.
U.S. Forest Service personnel have identified nearly 100 obstructions on roads and trails in need of repair. Those include damaged bridges, culverts, washed out roads and trails and other significant impacts.
The network of Forest Service roads on the Great Divide and Washburn Ranger Districts that were impacted by the storm are critical thoroughfares for local towns and residents.
As assessments began to uncover the extent of damage the Forest started working with their Regional Office in Milwaukee to submit a request to the Emergency Relief for Federally Owned Roads Program (also known as ERFO Program).
Part of the program includes a quick release of funds to make emergency repairs to restore essential traffic, to minimize the extent of damage, or to protect the remaining facilities. The Forest was granted $900,000 of ERFO Quick Release funds by the Department of Transportation.
“This funding will help the Forest Service continue its partner efforts with local townships and counties to address critical public access,” said Mike Martin, Great Divide District Ranger on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.
The ERFO Program assists federal agencies with the repair or reconstruction of tribal transportation facilities, federal lands transportation facilities, and other federally owned roads that are open to public travel, which are found to have suffered serious damage by a natural disaster over a wide area or by a catastrophic failure https://flh.fhwa.dot.gov/programs/erfo/.
The Forest continues to work with the local towns and counties within the affected area to make emergency repairs allowing access into and out of the and recreation area closure remains in effect. Many areas remain inaccessible and are dangerous. For a complete listing please visit our website at www.fs.usda.gov/CNNF/. The public is urged to use extreme caution if traveling in the impacted area as conditions continue to change and damages incurred.
For more information on the flood event visit the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest website at www.fs.usda.gov/CNNF/.