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South Carolina Hurricane Florence (DR-4394-SC)

Incident Period: September 8, 2018 - October 8, 2018
Declaration Date: September 16, 2018

Additional Resource Pages:


Stay connected with us by calling 800-621-3362 or downloading the FEMA App. The FEMA mobile app is available for Apple and Android mobile devices.

Financial Assistance

Individual Assistance Amount
Total Housing Assistance (HA) - Dollars Approved $21,521,282.91
Total Other Needs Assistance (ONA) - Dollars Approved $3,002,551.29
Total Individual & Households Program Dollars Approved $24,523,834.20
Individual Assistance Applications Approved 5175
Public Assistance Amount
Emergency Work (Categories A-B) - Dollars Obligated $55,799,435.12
Permanent Work (Categories C-G) - Dollars Obligated $32,185,307.02
Total Public Assistance Grants Dollars Obligated $98,778,366.66
Hazard Mitigation Assistance Amount
Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) - Dollars Obligated $1,180,265.71

Applying for Assistance


Homeowners, renters and business owners who have uninsured and underinsured losses as a result of Hurricane Florence in Chesterfield, Dillon, Horry, Marion and Marlboro counties may apply for disaster assistance. 

If you cannot return to your home, or you are unable to live in your home because of disaster damage, visit DisasterAssistance.gov, or call 800-621-3362 (800-462-7585 TTY) (Multilingual operators are available, press 2 for Spanish) to determine if state, voluntary, and local organizations are in your community to address your immediate needs.


If you are in one of the designated counties, you will need the following to apply for assistance:

  • Social Security Number;
  • Daytime telephone number;
  • Current mailing address and zip code of the damaged property; and
  • Insurance information, if available.

After registering for disaster assistance, survivors may be asked to fill out a low-interest disaster loan application with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA offers low-interest disaster loans for homeowners and renters, businesses and non-profit organization. Completing a home loan application makes it possible to be considered for additional assistance. Applicants do not have to accept the loan if they qualify.

SBA applicants may apply online at DisasterLoan.sba.gov. Information about low-interest SBA disaster loans and application forms are available online at SBA.gov/disaster or by calling 800-659-2955 (TTY users call 800-877-8339) or via email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov.  Call SBA at 800-659-2955 to have an application mailed to you.

Disaster Survivor Assistance teams are working in areas affected by Hurricane Florence, but you do not have to wait for teams to arrive before they register with FEMA.

DSA teams are equipped with latest mobile technology allowing them to register survivors for disaster assistance, update their records and make referrals to community partners. Team members tailor the information and services they provide to the individual survivor’s needs.

Like all FEMA field personnel, disaster survivor assistance team members carry official FEMA identification. Residents are encouraged to ask for photo identification before providing personal information.

By registering with FEMA, survivors may qualify for federal disaster assistance such as:

  •  Help paying for rent or a temporary place to live.
  •  Financial awards for essential home repairs not covered by insurance.
  •  Awards for disaster-related needs not covered by insurance — such as medical, dental, transportation, funeral expenses, moving and storage fees, personal property loss and child care.

National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Resources

(Washington, D.C., DAY, MONTH DATE, 2018) – Characterized as one of the worst flooding events in the Carolinas, Hurricane Florence has caused catastrophic flood damage to homes across the two states. 

With thousands of residents already home or heading there soon, and thousands still unable to safely return to theirs, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) wants to ensure policyholders have the information and resources available to begin their recovery process.

Paul Huang, Assistant Administrator for the Federal Insurance Directorate, FEMA, has information and tips on how to file a flood insurance claim, begin the cleanup process, and file for disaster assistance. This link goes to the FEMA Media Library at: https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/audio/171286


What To Expect After Registering For Assistance

After registering for disaster assistance, a survivor may be contacted by a housing inspector to schedule an inspection. The inspection generally takes about 20-40 minutes. The inspector will want to see the damaged areas of the home and any damaged furniture and personal property. There is no fee for the inspection.

Housing inspectors always wear a FEMA badge and will not ask you for your unique 9-digit registration number. They will already have it on file.

If the home was found to be inaccessible at the time of inspection, the applicant is required to let FEMA know when the home is accessible and request a new inspection. To update the status of an uninhabitable dwelling, applicants should call the disaster assistance helpline at 800-621-3362.

Someone 18 years of age or older must be present during the inspection. The inspector will also ask to see: Heading: What to expect after you apply for disaster assistance.On the left side of the graphic are the words A call from a FEMA inspector. A call from a FEMA inspector.In the bottom middle section of the graphic is the phrase ,A brief inspector's visit.On the right side of the graphic is the phrase, A decision letter.In the center of the graphic is a blue box with the following text: If you receive an SBA loan application, complete it.Completing the application is a necessary step to be considered for other forms of disaster assistancee. You don't have to accept the loan.

  • Photo identification;
  • Proof of ownership/occupancy of damaged residence (tax bill, mortgage payment book, rental agreement or utility bill);
  • Insurance documents (homeowner’s or renter’s insurance and/or an auto insurance policy summary);
  • List of people living in the residence at the time of disaster; and
  • All disaster-related damages to both real and personal property.

Once the inspection process is complete, FEMA will review the case and send a letter to the applicant outlining a decision.

If an applicant is eligible for FEMA assistance, FEMA will send funds via check by mail or direct deposit into the survivor’s bank account. If a survivor receives money for rental assistance, the survivor must keep documentation and receipts of payments made and have a written landlord/tenant agreement for the time frame for which assistance is provided.

If an applicant is not eligible for FEMA assistance, FEMA will send a letter explaining why the applicant was determined ineligible. The applicant should read this letter carefully. Many times ineligibility is due to FEMA not having important information, such as an insurance settlement letter, proof of ownership or proof of occupancy. Applicants have 60 days to appeal a FEMA decision. The appeal process is detailed in the letter.


How to Help


When disaster strikes, every little bit helps. To make the most of your contributions, please follow our guidelines to learn the most effective and safest ways to donate cash, goods, or time following a disaster.

An outstretched hand supports a heart, set against a blue background. FEMA seal in the lower right corner. Text reads: How to help after a disaster. The best way to help is with cash donations to trusted organizations. · Cash is efficient, flexible to use, and requires no packaging or transport. · Trusted organizations will ensure your money goes to help those in need.FEMA does not transport donations, please work with a trusted organization.

  • Cash is best. Financial contributions to recognized disaster relief organizations are the fastest, most flexible, and most effective method of donating. Organizations on the ground know what items and quantities are needed, often buy in bulk with discounts and, if possible, purchase through area businesses which supports economic recovery.
  • Confirm donations needed. Critical needs change rapidly – confirm needed items BEFORE collecting; pack and label carefully; confirm delivery locations; arrange transportation. Unsolicited goods NOT needed burden local organizations’ ability to meet survivors’ confirmed needs, drawing away valuable volunteer labor, transportation, and warehouse space.
  • Connect to volunteer. Never Self Deploy During a Disaster. Trusted organizations operating in the affected area know where volunteers are needed, and can ensure appropriate volunteer safety, training, and housing.

For more information on how you can support survivors in South Carolina, visit: https://www.scemd.org/recover/volunteer-and-donate/.

Staying Safe

  • Stay alert. Flooding is threatening several roads, and closures are likely to increase as rivers continue rising. In some counties it still isn’t safe to return home.
  • Keep out of the water. Flood water can contain dangerous debris, downed power lines, and germs. Do not attempt to walk, swim, wade or drive through flood waters.
    • Never drive through floodwaters; it only takes 2 feet of swiftly moving water to sweep away a full-size vehicle. Turn around and don't drown.
  • Avoid exposure to mold or bacteria. Mold and bacteria growth after flood waters recede can be hazarddous to your health.
  • Make sure food is safe to eat.
    • Never taste food to determine if it's safe.
    • Food may have spoiled if refrigeration was lost during power outage.
    • Throw away any food that touched flood water.
  • Extreme heat and humidity can be dangerous. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, and take frequent rest breaks.
  • Do not use GPS to plan your route, as it may route you into flooded areas

Cleaning Up After a Disaster

Below are a few simple guidelines to follow that will make the clean-up and salvage process safer and easier:

Returning Home

  • Always wear protective clothing including long-sleeved shirts, long pants, rubber or plastic gloves and waterproof boots or shoes. Clouds part over a house. Landscape shows mountains in the background and puddles in the foreground. Title reads:
  • Before entering your home, look outside for damaged power lines, gas lines and other exterior damage.
  • Take photos of your damage before you begin clean up and save repair receipts.
  • Your home may be contaminated with mold, which raises the health risk for those with asthma, allergies and breathing conditions.
  • Open doors and windows so your house can air out before spending any length of time inside.
  • Turn off main electrical power and water systems and don’t use gas appliances until a professional can ensure they are safe.
  • Check all ceilings and floors for signs of sagging or other potentially dangerous structural damage.
  • Throw out all foods, beverages and medicines exposed to flood waters or mud including canned goods and containers with food or liquid.
  • Also, throw out any items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected (mattresses, carpeting, stuffed animals, etc.).
  • Beware of snakes, insects, and other animals that may be on your property or in your home.


Trusted Information Sources

A rumor control page has been set up to dispel false information about Hurricane Florence.

  • Download the FEMA mobile app (available in English and Spanish) to receive emergency alerts and find a shelter. Free and available on Apple and Android devices.
  • Beware of post-storm donation scams. Research before you donate and only donate to reputable organizations.
  • Anyone in South Carolina with questions related to Hurricane Florence should call the Public Information Phone System at 866-246-0133
  • Unfortunately, criminals can exploit disasters by sending fraudulent communications through email or social media and by creating phony websites to silicit contributions.
    • The National Center for Disaster Fraud hotline is open at 866-720-5721. The line is staffed 24 hours a day. Or, email disaster@leo.gov.


News and Information

No articles have been tagged with this disaster.

Designated Counties (Individual Assistance)

  • Chesterfield (County)
  • Darlington (County)
  • Dillon (County)
  • Florence (County)
  • Georgetown (County)
  • Horry (County)
  • Marion (County)
  • Marlboro (County)

Preliminary Damage Assessment Documents

Last updated September 9, 2020