IMAGES: Flood water could lead to health problems - WDRB 41 Louisville News

IMAGES: Flood water could lead to health problems

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By: Tamara Evans - tevans@fox41.com

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB Fox 41)

There is still a lot of mud and standing water left behind where the flood waters were, which can cause some health problems if you don't take action.

It's a much-different scene on Juniper Beach Road today that what we saw within the last few weeks, which was water covering the roads and creeping into homes.

"I was 2 feet from getting a disaster on the second floor. I'm fortunate," says Juniper Beach Road homeowner, Jim Stebbins.

Jim Stebbins says the water and the winds caused quite a mess on his street and inside his home.

"With the river being up to...it was, 31 feet and 3-4 feet waves...it destroyed a lot of peoples' houses. I'm lucky I don't have any structural damage," says Jim Stebbins.

However, many of his neighbors did. Today they were getting rid of items damaged by flooding and deciding what to keep. Health officials say they should first examine what was in the water.

"That flood water is gonna be exposed to soil, and that soil is gonna have bacteria and mold in it. Certainly it has the potential of being sewage involved and sewage obviously is gonna have human and animal fecal matter," says Dr. Matthew Zahn, the Interim Director of the Metro Health Department.

They say the basic way to clean items that came in contact with the water is with bleach and water, and to also wash what you can in hot water so you don't get sick.

"We certainly will have people who will get bacterial infections, intestinal infections because their children have been playing with materials that have been in the water, or they have been handling materials in that water," says Dr. Matthew Zahn.

Health officials say it's not only the water that caused damage that's a concern. It's also the standing water that's now left behind.

"The mosquitos are going to be around, so the standing water that is sitting outside can be an issue as well. Mosquito bites and the infections that go along with them like West Nile is something we need to be aware of," says Dr. Matthew Zahn, the Interim Director of the Metro Health Department.

And, while we wait for some of that water to finally go away, for now it's a reminder of the flooding that left its mark for these homeowners.

"All and all, nobody got hurt. We're very fortunate," says Jim Stebbins.

Health officials say, the two big items you want to throw away if they came in contact with the flood waters are mattresses, and upholstered furniture.

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