LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (May 5, 2014) – State and federal disaster responders are acting at record pace to help survivors of the storms and tornadoes that tore through Arkansas on April 27. Federal disaster assistance approved for Arkansans has topped $1 million – and that's just one of several milestones so far.
President Obama issued a disaster declaration for Faulkner County at 10 a.m. April 29. At 5:45 p.m., less than eight hours later, the first Mobile Registration Intake Center (MRIC) opened for business in Vilonia.
Just eight minutes after the center opened, Disaster Survivor Assistance team members with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM) had registered the first survivor for Individual Assistance. And the first FEMA funds, a $1,230 grant from Rental Assistance, were approved at noon on April 30 – less than 26 hours after the disaster declaration.
"We're very pleased with the efforts at all levels of recovery, from individuals to government agencies," said State Coordinating Officer David Maxwell of ADEM. "Getting Arkansans' needs met so they can begin rebuilding their lives is our main concern."
FEMA housing inspectors are also working quickly to assess homeowners' property damages. The first inspection was completed less than 26 hours after the declaration. Even more impressive, once an applicant requests a FEMA inspection, the response time is just four hours and 48 minutes.
"FEMA is fully committed to this mission," said Federal Coordinating Officer Timothy J. Scranton. "Make no mistake – we are here for the long haul."
Homeowners, renters and businesses owner can register online at www.disasterassistance.govor via smartphone at m.fema.gov. Applicants may also call 1-800-621-3362 or (TTY) 1-800-462-7585. If you use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice