HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Residents of four central Pennsylvania counties who suffered property damage or losses because of Hurricane Dennis can apply for federal assistance by calling the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The toll-free number is 1-800-462-9029.
Lycoming, Northumberland, Snyder and Union counties became eligible for disaster assistance under a declaration made Wednesday by President Clinton. The president named FEMA official Jack Schuback as federal coordinating officer for the disaster-recovery effort.
"Residents who need aid must call the teleregistration center. It's the first step in applying for federal assistance," Schuback said. "After you register, by calling 1-800-462-9029, a FEMA inspector may visit your property to check the damage." The hearing- or speech- impaired with TTY equipment can call 1-800-462-7585.
State and federal officials point out that even if you have property insurance you may qualify for assistance for uninsured damage. "Unless disaster victims apply by calling the toll-free number -1-800-462-9029 - they won't know if they may qualify for assistance, and we can't help them," added Bob Churchman, acting director of the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency. Churchman is state coordinating officer for the disaster.
Programs available for hurricane victims include disaster-housing assistance, low-interest loans to repair or replace damaged property, and grants for serious needs and necessary expenses.
"Even if you called the local emergency management office after the storm, you must call the 1-800-462-9029 number to be eligible for any further assistance," Churchman said.
If you have registered and need further information, you can call the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-525-0321. The hearing- and speech- impaired with TTY equipment can call 1-800-462-7585.