LEVASY, MO (KCTV) -- Once families can safely reach their homes, it’s recommended that they wear N95 respirator masks to protect them from airborne particles.

Jerry Friedrich made his first trip to see his hardware store after floodwater filled the city of Levasy.

“This side of town went under in two hours,” Friedrich said.

The sign on Friedrich’s storefront still manages to make many visitors laugh despite the damage surrounding it.

“Fred’s tire repair and marriage counseling either one of them can blow up at any time,” Friedrich said.

But flooding inside his store and inside his neighbors’ homes is devastating.

As floodwater took over, a farmer made one final trip on a tractor to bring families out.

“You talk about heart wrenching. Everybody is holding each other and watching their homes go under water,” Friedrich said.

Like many of his neighbors, Friedrich hasn’t felt right since floodwaters overtook their community.

“I’ve already been rundown. A lot of people are concerned with sickness and the mosquitoes. I went back through there and they are swarming everywhere already,” Friedrich said.

Wednesday night, Jackson County Health officials handed out disposable respirators and gave advice on staying safe and offered Tdap and Hep A vaccines.

“Mold of course is always a concern,” Kayla Parker, Communication Specialists for Jackson County Health Department, said. “There are a lot of things that are stirred up when there is flooding. You really need to take a lot of precautions. Wear gear such as goggles, boots and gloves.”

Friedrich said cleaning up extensive damage will be costly, but he plans to reopen.

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