INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- A few days remain for residents who wish to visit the temporary Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in Gibson, Martin and Washington Counties . The DRC operating in Washington County will close at 6 p.m. on Friday, February 18, while the centers in Gibson and Martin Counties will close at 7 p.m. on Saturday, February 19.
Federal Coordinating Officer Ron Sherman of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) stressed that "Help with questions on federal disaster assistance is just a phone call away. Operators at the FEMA toll-free number are available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week to help with many of the questions that are brought to the recovery centers."
Assistance is still available and those who have questions about grants or low-interest disaster loans may call the toll-free application/helpline 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585 for those with speech and hearing impairments.
"The temporary centers are opened to provide detailed program information. In addition to FEMA and SBA personnel, disaster recovery specialists are available to answer questions and provide information on recovery, restoration and rebuilding," said Phil Roberts, State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) state coordinating officer. "At this stage of the recovery process, the emphasis for assistance is to meet the long-term needs of victims."
The first Disaster Recovery Center opened on January 31. Since then 1,018 homeowners, renters, and business owners have visited one of the 20 centers located around the state. Anyone may visit the center closest to them. You do not need a reservation or need to reside in that specific county.
March 22 is the deadline to call or apply online. There are two easy ways to begin the application process. Residents may call to FEMA's toll-free number, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), TTY 1-800-462-7585. Both numbers are available from 7 am to 7 pm, seven days a week until further notice, and multilingual operators are also available to answer your call. In addition, residents with Internet access now have the option to register on the agency's website at http://www.fema.gov where valuable recovery information is also available.
FEMA prepares the nation for all hazards and effectively manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.