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Flood Damage Across Washington & Aroostook Counties 

The rainstorm that soaked parts of the state this week has left close to a million dollars worth of damage in eastern Maine.Most of that damage is in Aroostook County and parts of Washington County in places like Calais. City officials there say the damage in the downtown area will cost around $70,000 to repair. Calais city manager Diane Barnes is calling this a 100 year event, but other parts of washington county were hit even harder.Ray Brown is a wildlife biologist at the Moosehorn Wildlife Refuge in Calais where they’ve sustained heavy flood damage. “The refuge has been here 73 years and as far as I know there’s been no flood like this in history,” Brown says, “and certainly there hasn’t been this amount of damage in history.” The flood damage at the refuge is estimated at hundreds of thousands of dollars and that number is expected to climb. “We haven’t been able to get to a lot of the sites,” brown says. “Just because there’s a lot of road washouts, bridges out, roads are gone entirely in some places.”The problem began when around 12 inches of heavy, wet snow fell near the beginning of the month. That was followed by a storm that dropped 8 inches of rain in just 12 hours. “Those two things together, with the frozen ponds and everything was frozen up, all the water on top of it had nowhere to go,” Brown says.The fresh snow is making the tough job of assessing the damage even tougher according to Brown. “I was out yesterday driving some of the roads and it was hard to even see where the wash outs were because there was snow covering the ground and I didn’t know until I drove into some of the holes that they were even there.”The folks at the refuge are hopeful, with the help of some emergency federal funds, the damage can be fully repaired. They won’t be able to begin most of the repairs until the spring.