Dededo, Guam -- Super Typhoon Pongsona applicants on Rota who have registered for disaster assistance can expect a visit from a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) inspector and/or a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) inspector, or both.
Inspections are mandatory. Before any application can be completed and approved, the location must be inspected. Inspectors verify the nature and extent of the damage suffered by those who have applied for federal disaster assistance. This includes inspections for FEMA housing assistance, personal property, or SBA low-interest disaster loans.
FEMA schedules inspections within 7 to 10 days from the date of application. The SBA sends loss verifiers to inspect damaged property of those who have submitted completed loan applications. Local building and safety inspectors may also schedule an inspection to see if damaged structures are safe.
Disaster officials warn typhoon victims to be cautious about letting unfamiliar visitors into their homes, even though they may introduce themselves as an inspector.
"Ask for identification from anyone claiming to be an inspector," urged FEMA's Deputy Federal Coordinating Officer for Rota Tom Costello. "Our inspectors are required to display their picture identification badge at all times. There is never a charge for these inspections."
As of January 1, a total of 212 applicants have registered for assistance. Those who have not yet registered can apply by calling the toll-free registration number at 1-800-621-3362. Persons who are speech-or hearing-impaired can call 1-800-462-7585.