Nashville, TN -- Residents of Tennessee's declared disaster counties whose wells or septic tanks were damaged in the severe storms and flooding of May are eligible to seek federal financial assistance to restore them to use.
If the damage is permanent, assistance may be available to pump out septic tanks, repair or even replace them. Homeowners with private wells that were rendered useless may be eligible for assistance if the well is the sole source of water. Renters forced to vacate homes because of unusable wells or septic tanks also may apply for assistance to get temporary housing.
A wide range of state and federal help is available by calling the toll-free registration line, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. seven days a week. Persons with speech or hearing impairments should apply by calling the TDD line, 1-800-462-7585.
Officials cautioned that water pumped from wells that have been flooded should be disinfected before being used for drinking, food preparation and other domestic needs. For instructions on how to disinfect wells and/or arrange for sampling, contact the local health department.