TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Dealing with disasters can be overwhelming - and the application forms for disaster assistance can be confusing and the process can be frustrating.
Fortunately, help is as close as a telephone. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to operate a toll-free Helpline staffed by specialists who can guide callers through the disaster assistance process.
North Floridians recovering from the storm and flood damage of late March through early May are encouraged to call 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 to register for assistance and to follow up on their applications.
Multilingual operators are available daily 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The disaster assistance registration deadline is June 29, 2009. Calling the county emergency manager does not register an applicant for FEMA assistance. FEMA will assign properly registered applicants a nine-digit control number.
It is important to stay in touch with FEMA by using the Helpline to check on the status of an application, to update contact information, to change an inspection appointment and to update other application information.
Helpline operators can also answer questions about how to complete required forms.
FEMA leads and supports the nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation, to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.