States Begin Cleanup After Ivan Brings Floods

A town in Ohio brought out snowplows and fire hoses Monday to clear the muck away. In New Jersey, the Statehouse was closed after its parking garage was flooded by the Delaware River (search).

In Point Pleasant, W.Va., water rose near the tops of lampposts at a riverfront park outside the city's floodwall. And parts of downtown Port Deposit, Md., were off limits after the Susquehanna River (search) spilled into city streets.

The remnants of Hurricane Ivan (search) brought ruinous flooding to a large swath of the East after causing misery across the South. On Monday, officials worked to clear streets of water and debris and return people to their homes.

"Our guys are putting snowplows on as we speak and getting ready to try to move the muck as soon as the water goes out," said Mayor Michael Mullen, of Marietta, Ohio, a town at the confluence of the Ohio and Muskingum rivers which saw its worst flooding in 40 years.

Water reached the top of the goal posts at the Marietta College football field, which sits near a creek, and many homes and businesses had water up to 3 feet deep. Throughout eastern Ohio, about 1,700 people had been forced out of their homes over the weekend.

No deaths or injuries were reported in Marietta but about 400 homes and 400 businesses were damaged. Mullen predicted downtown businesses would be covered in up to 6 inches of Ohio River mud once the waters recede.

"We're switching gears from rescue to recovery," added Mike Cullums, spokesman for the Washington County Emergency Management Agency. "It's still very intense for everybody."

The scene was similar in Port Deposit, a low-lying town in northeastern Maryland on the Susquehanna River. The river rushed at 567,000 cubic feet per second Monday -- more than five times its normal maximum level for this time of year.

The center of town remained closed to incoming traffic and roads at the north end of town were impassable, but floodwaters were expected to begin receding Monday evening. Some of the 200 people who evacuated their homes Sunday began returning.

"We've got lots of mud. We've got lots of debris," Deputy Mayor Kerry Abrams said from an emergency command center at Town Hall.

In West Virginia, more than 300 homes and businesses were destroyed and about 470 homes were severely damaged, the state Office of Emergency Services said. Troopers were searching for a man in the state's northern panhandle whose empty truck was found in a creek Saturday night.

President Bush issued a disaster declaration Monday for eight counties in West Virginia. Parts of eight other states previously were declared disaster areas because of Ivan, making residents eligible for aid.

Ivan and its remnants were blamed for at least 52 deaths in the United States and 70 in the Caribbean. Much of the destruction was caused by flooding in the storm's wake.

Flooding along the Susquehanna forced evacuations from Scranton to Harrisburg, and dozens of people had to be rescued by boat. An overflowing creek sent 4 feet of water into the county courthouse in Kittanning in east-central Pennsylvania, and several sewage plants were knocked out.

More than 100,000 residents around Harrisburg were ordered to boil tap water before drinking it, and the Red Cross and Dauphin County officials distributed thousands of gallons of spring water.

Flooding along the Delaware River forced thousands of Pennsylvania and New Jersey residents to evacuate Sunday.

In New Jersey, officials closed the Statehouse and several other state buildings in downtown Trenton after the Delaware sent 5 feet of water into the Statehouse parking garage. Both houses of the Legislature canceled their sessions Monday, but all state offices were to reopen Tuesday.

Recovery efforts also continued in the South.

In Cullasaja in western North Carolina, workers used heavy equipment and cadaver dogs to search for victims of a mudslide.

About 440,000 homes and businesses remained without power Monday in Florida and Alabama because of the hurricane. Relief workers were delivering massive amounts of food, water and ice to people affected by the storm.

In Navarre Beach in Florida's Panhandle, where Hurricane Ivan came ashore, homes and cottages were missing roofs, garages and balconies.

"We can't live there for a while, but it's there," 44-year-old Bob Evans said after inspecting his three-story home. The bottom floor was demolished, but everything else was intact.