Flooding in Fair Haven

    By on May 12, 2017
    • Volunteers get together to fill sandbags to be distributed to Fair Haven shoreline residents. High water levels have led to Fair Haven Mayor James Basile declaring a state of emergency and FEMA intervention. Kyle D. Meddaugh | onePhoto

    • Already at near record levels, when the wind shifts to come from the north, Lake Ontario’s already battered and overflowing south shore can rise several inches overnight. Due to the Village of Fair Haven’s safety concerns about visitors to flocking here to see the high waters, West Barrier Bar Park, pictured above, is now closed until the waters have crested. Kyle D. Meddaugh | onePhoto

    • To Fair Haven’s west, Blind Sodus Bay’s barrier bar has been breached.

    State of Emergency Declared, FEMA Intervenes

    Dan Durocher

    This past week, the village of Fair Haven was a hub of activity, as volunteers from the village and across the region helped agencies respond to rising water levels.

    On Monday, April 25, Fair Haven Mayor James Basile declared a state of emergency in Fair Haven. On that same day, Basile issued a no wake zone order, which restricts the speed of boats on the bay. Governor Andrew Cuomo also declared a state of emergency on Tuesday,

    May 2, in Cayuga County and other counties of upstate New York due to high water levels. As of Friday, May 5, Fair Haven Mayor James Basile reported, “[The] water level appears to be at or above Base Flood Elevation depending on wind direction. [Friday] morning the water level in the bay was approximately 249.1 feet (Base Flood Elevation is 248.9).”

    In response to the rising water levels, Neil Rivenburg from the office of Cayuga County Emergency Management contacted the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to intervene and undertake preventative measures.

    In response, a collective effort has taken place to ensure safety in Fair Haven. On Wednesday, May 3, the Fair Haven and Sterling Department of Public Works, FEMA, the Village of Fair Haven, the Fair Haven Volunteer Fire Company, individual volunteers and other fire departments from surrounding areas embarked on the task of preparing sandbags to be filled and distributed to shoreline residents. Basile added, “Fair Haven is prepared to make available 75,000 sandbags if necessary.” Even the American Red Cross has played a role in Fair Haven’s protection effort, as the Red Cross has set up two facilities to serve as shelter for residents who may have to relocate due to flooding.

    For more information on the high water levels in Fair Haven, or if you are a resident of Fair Haven at risk of property damage, contact the Fair Haven Village Hall at 315-947-5112 for assistance.


    Boat Launches and West Side Closed

    On Sunday, May 7, 2017 at 3:00 p.m., the Honorable Mayor James J. Basile of the Village of Fair Haven, NY issued an Emergency Order to close all Village owned boat launches and the West Barrier Bar Park until further notice subsequent to the April 25th declaration of a State of Emergency for the Village of Fair Haven, Bay Front Area.

    The Emergency Order will remain in effect until such a time as the Lake / Bay has crested, and the impacts from elevated waters and wakes has been deemed minimized.

    Mayor Basile and the Village Trustees, in consultation with the Cayuga County Office of Emergency Services have deemed this action necessary and appropriate in response to the potential impacts to the area as they relate to the elevated water levels.

    Any questions can be directed to the Village of Fair Haven Offices at 315-947-5112.

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