JACKSON, Tenn. -- Tennesseans who have registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for disaster assistance may be eligible for financial help to repair or replace uninsured vehicles damaged or destroyed by the recent tornadoes.
"Tennessee law requires only that drivers carry liability insurance," said Marsha Cornish, the deputy state coordinating officer for this disaster. "But many people aren't covered for the kind of damage they suffered during these storms."
Damaged and destroyed vehicles are among the losses that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) considers when evaluating applications for low-interest disaster loans. If the applicant is declined an SBA disaster loan, he or she will be referred to FEMA's Other Needs Assistance (ONA) grant program.
Tax-free ONA grants are intended to cover a wide range of uninsured, storm-related losses such as medical and dental expenses, funeral costs, lost personal possessions ? and essential transportation. "But these grants are limited," said Michael Karl, the lead federal official in Tennessee. "People who receive these funds may have to make some choices about how they will use those funds."
Residents of Benton, Cannon, Carroll, Cheatham, Cumberland, Davidson, Dickson, Dyer, Fayette, Gibson, Haywood, Maury, Sumner, Warren and Weakley counties can apply for disaster assistance by calling FEMA's toll-free registration line at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362.) There is also a TTY line for the speech and hearing impaired at 1-800-462-7585.Both lines are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week. Applicants also may register online at FEMA's Web site www.fema.gov .