COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) are opening Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in Sumter and Chesterfield Counties. The centers provide a location where people are able to talk face-to-face with recovery specialists from local, state and federal agencies. Any individual who suffered damages from the multiple storms that began with Hurricane Frances on September 6, including all related damages sustained through October 11, may be eligible for assistance.
Individuals can begin the disaster application process by calling the toll-free registration number 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing- and speech- impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers are available 24-hours a day, seven days a week until further notice. Individuals also can find valuable recovery information on the agency’s website at .
“As people are putting their lives back together, the most important step is to call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362),” said Michael Bolch, FEMA’s federal coordinating officer for the disaster. “Don’t get discouraged; continue to call until you get through. Non-peak calling times are currently between midnight to 4:30 a.m..”
Both DRCs will open on Monday, October 18 and close October 20. Both centers will be staffed from 10:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Their locations are:
Sumter County DRC
Sumter County Exhibition Hall
700 W Liberty Street
Sumter, SC 29150
Chesterfield County DRC
Piggly Wiggly Parking Lot
1303 W Boulevard
Chesterfield, SC 29709
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA's continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.