UPDATE: Corner Brook couple out of their home turning to province for help

Cory Hurley
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Joan Hanlon is seen outside her home on Valley Road Tuesday.

CORNER BROOK  One week after rushing out of their home, a Corner Brook couple is still afraid to move back in.

Joan Hanlon, and her husband Leonard, vacated their Valley Road house immediately after a bank in their backyard gave away during the Nov. 28 flooding. Their foundation is now just feet away in width in some areas overlooking a steep embankment. Their basement concrete steps are just inches from toppling into the brook below.

Hanlon said she was notified by the city insurer that the land in question is indeed Crown land, and that she should contact the provincial government now. She contacted her MHA Vaughn Granter this morning, and left a message for him.

She also got a telephone call from Mayor Charles Pender Wednesday evening — her first correspondence from the city since the day after the flooding. An insurance adjuster visited her property Monday, and Hanlon was waiting on the results of a report being compiled by the city’s insurer.

Pender has said city workers did not evacuate the couple — that they do not have the expertise required to do so. However, Hanlon remains adamant that is what happened. City workers told her to leave immediately after the bank gave away, and city staff told her they would not go back inside if it were them, according to the distraught woman.

“What was I supposed to do,” she said, Thursday morning. “Ignore them?”

Generally, natural disasters such as flooding are not covered by typical home owner’s insurance or the city, so the only course of action sometimes is through the province’s disaster relief program. The city has informed Municipal Affairs about some of the personal damage incidents from last week’s flooding, and has contacted the local MHAs on their behalf.

Hanlon said she is waiting to hear back from the city’s insurance to determine her best course of action.

“I feel terrible about this,” she said. “I just don’t know what to do. Just how long does all this take? It’s a week ago today now.”

The couple is staying at a friend’s house next door to their Valley Road home.

Organizations: Valley Road house

Geographic location: Corner Brook

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Recent comments

  • Ken
    December 05, 2013 - 15:26

    This house has been there for years and years with no issues. The culverts put in before the bridge have added a gushing effect during heavy rains and the bottom of Valley Rd. being filled in has impeded the flow resulting in higher waters in the brook. The city made these changes and should help these folks.

  • jo
    December 05, 2013 - 12:45

    I see Pender is going back to his old ways. The city of Corner Brook and the NL Government always pass the buck. Excuse after excuse. The city and government take care of there own and that's it. A lot of things are done behind close doors that nobody knows. The guilty always stick together. Anyone that has dealt with the city and the government know what I mean. They are all sly ********. One bit of advice GET EVERYTHING in writing from the city and the government