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2011 0830 xirene 025

The Herald-Dispatch

Jean Maynes, business manager of the Vermont Standard, walks through several inches of river silt and debris in what used to be her newsroom in Woodstock, Vt. Monday Aug. 29,2011. Flooding caused by Tropical Storm Irene washed out roads and bridges, cut off about a dozen towns, left thousands of homes and businesses without power, and killed at least three people. (AP Photo/Polina Yamshchikov/Valley News)

Gallery: Residents recover from Hurricane Irene damage

Aug. 30, 2011 @ 02:25 PM

NEWFANE, Vt. (AP) -- National Guard helicopters are taking food and water to Vermont towns cut off by flood-damaged roads and bridges.

About a dozen towns in the southern part of the state were rendered inaccessible by vehicular traffic after heavy rainfall from the remnants of Hurricane Irene on Sunday.

Deputy state Transportation Secretary Sue Minter says state crews hope to re-establish ground contact with all isolated communities Tuesday.

About 20,000 Vermont utility customers remain without power, but crews can't begin to restore power until they can reach the affected communities.

Vermont Emergency Management spokesman Mark Bosma says that in addition to Guard helicopters, special trucks are carrying emergency supplies to towns whose roads may be passable for them but not for the public.