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Hurricane Sandy Response

Fact sheets

Forward, share, or print the handouts below for anyone working on flood cleanup. Many of the factsheets below are also in Spanish or Chinese.

Hurricane Sandy Hotline Contacts
Children's Health
Disinfecting Germs
Flood Cleanup
Household Hazardous Waste
Oil Cleanup
Underground Storage Tanks

Hurricane Sandy Hotline Contacts:

  • Contacts for New Jersey (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF). New Jersey Hurricane Sandy Public Health Hotline: 1-866-234-0964
    • en español: Líneas de atención por el Huracán Sandy en Nueva Jersey (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF)
    • Chinese: 新澤西颶風桑迪熱綫電話 New Jersey Hurricane Sandy Hotline(PDF) (1 pg, about PDF)

  • Contacts for New York (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF). New York State Hurricane Sandy Helpline: 1-888-769-7243
    • en español: Líneas de atención por el Huracán Sandy en el Estado de Nueva York (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF)
    • Chinese: 紐約颶風桑迪熱綫電話 New York Hurricane Sandy Hotline (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF)

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Post-Disaster Renovations and Asbestos for Homeowners and Workers (PDF) (2 pg, about PDF) Many homes, particularly older homes, may contain asbestos, a known carcinogen. Homeowners should contact state or local public health authorities if they believe a damaged building contains asbestos.

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Children's Health:

Protect Your Children (PDF) (4 pp. about PDF) There may be direct and indirect health consequences of floods. Direct exposure to the water and the flooded environment put children at risk for drowning, injuries from debris, chemical contamination, and hypothermia.

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Disinfecting Germs:

Kill Germs With Bleach (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF), from CDC. After a flood, germs will grow in your house. They can make you sick. Use bleach to kill germs on things touched by flood water.

  • en español: Mate los gérmenes con cloro (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF), de CDC. Después de una inundación, se multiplicarán los gérmenes en su casa y podrían causarle una enfermedad. Utilice cloro para eliminar los gérmenes de los artículos que estuvieron en contacto con el agua de la inundación.
  • Chinese: 用漂白劑殺 細菌 Use bleach to kill germs (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF)

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Flood Cleanup:

  • Initial Restoration for Flooded Buildings (PDF) (4 pp, about PDF) During the initial visit to a flood-damaged building, the situation often appears overwhelming. However, there are a number of straightforward principles can be applied to assist with the flood restoration effort.
  • Cleaning Up After a Flood: FAQs (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF). Avoid contact with flood water due to potentially elevated levels of contamination from sewage.
    • en español: Limpieza después de una inundación (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF). Antes de empezar la limpieza, asegúrese de tomar las precauciones necesarias para limitar el contacto con las aguas de la inundación
    • Chinese: 水災後的清理:常見問題 Cleaning up after the flood: Frequently Asked Questions (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF)
  • Flood Cleanup and Air In Your Home (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF). Flood water can make the air in your home unhealthy. When things get wet for more than 2 days they usually get moldy.
    • en español: Limpieza de agua de la inundación y el aire en su hogarr (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF) El agua de la inundación puede contaminar el aire en su hogar. Esto se debe a que cuando las cosas se mojan por más de 2 días usualmente se enmohecen.
    • Chinese: 水災之後的房屋清潔及其中的空氣 Flood cleanup in your home (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF)
  • Cleaning Up After a Flood: Basement Pump-outs (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF). If you notice oil or hazardous substances in your basement along with water, do not pump the water onto your lawn or into the street.

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Household Hazardous Waste:

Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (2 pp, about PDF). If your home was flooded, be aware that you may have chemical hazards in your home. These products contain potentially hazardous ingredients that require special care when you dispose of them.

  • en español: Manejo de Desperdicios Caseros Peligrosos (PDF) (2 pp, sobre PDF).Las inundaciones causadas por el huracán Sandy ocasionaron daños a muchos hogares en Nueva York, especialmente en áreas costeras.
  • Cleaning Up After a Flood: Dealing with Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF) Common household products that contain hazardous materials become household hazardous waste when they are discarded. Typical products that might be in your home include paints, cleaners, oils, batteries and pesticides. These products contain potentially hazardous chemicals that require special care when you dispose of them.
    • en español: La limpieza después de una inundación: Cómo manejar los desperdicios caseros peligrosos (PDF) (1pg, sobre PDF) Los productos caseros comunes que contienen materiales peligrosos se convierten en desperdicios caseros peligrosos cuando se desechan. Algunos productos comunes que puede encontrar en su hogar son pinturas, limpiadores, aceites, baterías y pesticidas. Estos productos contienen químicos potencialmente peligrosos que requieren un cuidado especial cuando vaya a desecharlos.
    • Chinese: 水災之後的清理:處理家庭住宅有害廢物 Cleaning Up After a Flood: Dealing with Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (1 pp, about PDF).
  • Flood Cleanup in New York City: Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF) People can be exposed to dangerous chemicals when cleaning up flooded homes and disposing of damaged household items. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will be periodically driving the streets of impacted areas and collecting household hazardous waste.
  • Nassau County: Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF), The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues efforts to collect household hazardous waste from neighborhoods damaged by Hurricane Sandy flood waters. EPA and their contractors will continue to drive streets of impacted areas to conduct curbside pickup of household hazardous waste through the month of November.
  • Suffolk County: Household Hazardous Waste (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF), The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, county officials, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and local representatives have established FREE household hazardous waste drop-off locations in the Towns of Islip and Babylon, Suffolk County.

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Get Rid Of Mold (PDF) (1 pp, about PDF), from CDC. After a flood, mold will grow in your house. It can make you sick. You will need to clean your house.

  • en español: Elimine el moho (PDF) (1 pg, sobre PDF), de CDC. Después de una inundación, en su casa se producirá moho, que puede causarle una enfermedad. Por consiguiente, usted necesitará limpiar su casa.
  • Chinese: 清除黴斑 Remove mold (PDF) (1 pp, about PDF)

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Oil Cleanup:

Dealing with Oil Contamination in Homes (PDF) (2 pp, about PDF) EPA, along with other federal, state and local agencies want people to be aware of possible threats to human health and the environment associated with petroleum products and other environmental hazards.

  • en español: Cómo manejar la contaminación del aceite en el hogar (PDF) (1 pg, about PDF) Si observa aceite u otra sustancia peligrosa en el agua en su sótano, no bombee el agua a su césped o a la calle.
  • Chinese: 處理家中的油 污染 Dealing with oil pollution in the home (PDF) (2 pp, about PDF)

Hurricane Sandy Cleanup: Oil Contamination in Soil (PDF) (1 pp, about PDF) Deposits of home heating oil and other petroleum products cause odors and are generally difficult to clean up. You can smell most pollutants well below levels that would cause health problems.

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Post-Disaster Renovations and Lead-Based Paint (PDF) (2 pg, about PDF). Natural disasters often result in the need for renovations to damaged homes and other structures. To ensure that property owners and occupants are able to act quickly to preserve their homes and property in the wake of disasters, the Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule includes an emergency provision exempting firms from certain requirements.

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Underground Storage Tanks:

Underground Storage Tank Flood Guide (PDF) (32 pp, about PDF). EPA developed this guide to help provide information to localities, states, and tribes when addressing relevant compliance challenges that may arise after a flood.

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Additional information

  • Basic information about indoor air quality
  • More about household hazardous waste
  • Lead-paint renovation and repair
  • Basic information about underground storage tanks

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