Though many are cutoff, Marlboro residents are OK

Wednesday August 31, 2011

BRATTLEBORO -- Even though Marlboro has been cut off from surrounding towns, people are faring well, said Forrest Holzapfel, assistant town clerk.

"We are doing all right," he said on Tuesday afternoon.

"To the best of our knowledge, everybody in Marlboro has sufficient food and water for now," said Marcia Hamilton, public information officer for the town's emergency operations center.

However, roads all over town have been washed out, limiting where people can drive, said Holzapfel.

"You can drive around, but you can't get anywhere," he said. "Right now, the fire department is asking people to stay off the road."

Hamilton said road crews are repairing the roads as fast as they can, however there is a shortage of materials.

Holzapfel said people should stay home unless they absolutely have to get out.

"A lot of the roads are dangerous," he said.

It's unclear at this point when Route 9 in Brattleboro will be open to allow access to Marlboro and points beyond. However, Marlboro's road crews are hopeful they will soon have Ames Hill Road ready for traffic today, he said.

"It sounds like the hardest hit road is Augur Hole, which goes to Newfane," said Holzapfel. "All the bridges have basically been blown out."

Fortunately, emergency responders have been able to walk the road and check on the residents who live on it, he said.

Though there has been a lot of damage along the Whetsone Brook and on Augur Hole Road near the Branch Brook, where a house was swept away, the town has no report of causalities, said Hamilton.

Roads in and out of town are closed until further notice, she said, but the National Guard is letting people into Wilmington for food, medicine and gas.

Holzapfel learned from the owners of Sweetie's Market and Deli on Route 9 that they are going to try to remain open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day for those who need some basic supplies such as milk.

On Tuesday, more than half the town's residents were still without power and Internet access, including Camp Neringa on MacArthur Road.

Attendees at a wedding party at the camp have been stranded there since Saturday, when an eight-foot culvert at the end of the driveway blew out, said Holzapfel.

Dalia Juskys, of Berkeley, Calif., who was attending the wedding with her daughter, said more than 50 people have been stranded by the washout, including her daughter.

Juskys and her partner were staying at the Latchis Hotel until Flat Street was flooded. Currently, they are staying at a bed and breakfast on Putney Road.

Though mobile phone coverage has been spotty, Juskys said she has heard from her daughter who told her they plan to wait a few more days and may try to hike out if the driveway is not fixed.

At Marlboro College, all of its first-year students, 77 in total, are on campus, as are 40 student leaders who serve as resident assistants and peer academic advisers, said Ken Schneck, the college's spokesman.

However, the start of school has been delayed until the roads can be opened, he said.

Those who need to reach the town's emergency management office at the fire department should call 254-1301 and the Town Clerk's office is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Bob Audette can be reached at, or at 802-254-2311, ext. 160.


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