ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. -- While state-federal Disaster Recovery Centers – the most visible aspect of the response – closed on Saturday, Federal Emergency Management Agency staff is still in eastern North Carolina, working with state and local emergency managers to assist people who were affected by Tropical Storm Nicole.
FEMA's telephone Helpline is still available seven days a week so that North Carolinians can register for federal assistance, learn the status of their application or get help understanding correspondence they receive from FEMA.
"Even though the recovery centers are closed, it's important that disaster survivors know assistance is still available," said state Emergency Management Director Doug Hoell. "One-on-one help is available at the Helpline, or people can use the FEMA website to register and check their application status."
Moreover, Hoell said, a FEMA team is still working with the state division of emergency management and county emergency managers to get important information to Nicole survivors and help the state and counties resolve individual problems.
W. Montague Winfield, the FEMA official who is in charge of federal recovery operations in North Carolina, said, "We will be in North Carolina through the registration deadline to provide assistance to Tropical Storm Nicole survivors. We have been here since the beginning and will continue to support the state as recovery continues."
Homeowners, renters and business owners in 14 eastern North Carolina counties have until Dec. 13 to register for federal disaster assistance and apply for low-interest disaster loans for uninsured and underinsured damages and losses caused by Tropical Storm Nicole.
More than 4,100 people have registered for disaster assistance and more than 3,500 homes have been inspected. FEMA-contracted inspectors will continue to review damage as necessary.
"Our Individual Assistance teams have been calling applicants to make sure that no eligible losses have been missed," Winfield said. "We want to ensure that disaster survivors know they can always call the toll-free number and reach the Helpline."
Homeowners and renters can register with FEMA online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362) or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Applicants can use the same telephone numbers to check on their FEMA registration by pressing the Helpline option.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.