LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Federal disaster survivor assistance teams are working in storm–stricken neighborhoods, helping Arkansans register for FEMA disaster assistance, providing application updates and making referrals to additional resources when needed.
Additionally, housing inspectors contracted by FEMA are reviewing residential damages onsite. Applicants must have suffered storm damage during the period from April 26 to May 19, be head of household and be a legal resident of the U.S.
FEMA teams will be in all 13 designated disaster counties—initially in Boone, Carroll, Clay, Fulton, Pulaski and Washington. They will also visit neighborhoods in Benton, Faulkner, Jackson, Lawrence, Randolph, Saline and Yell.
Arkansas residents are reminded to ask for federal and state photo identification before providing personal information to FEMA team members.
Survivors should always contact their insurance company as well as register with FEMA for assistance. Teams can register Arkansans or applicants can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362, which is Video Relay Service accessible.
Survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have difficulty speaking may call
TTY 800-462-7585. Helpline hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time, seven days a week until further notice.
Teams can address both immediate and emerging needs. Disaster survivors with communication-related disabilities—those who are deaf or hard of hearing, blind or have low vision and those with speech disabilities—may request reasonable accommodation(s) to aid in communication.
When registering, be ready to provide:
- Social Security number
- Address of the damaged residence and type of damage
- Insurance policy information;
- Current contact information with an address to receive mail
- Bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit (if desired)
The application process ensures consideration for all FEMA grant programs and disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration. Assistance may include:
- Grants to rent a temporary residence;
- Grants for essential home repairs not covered by insurance;
- Grants for serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance — such as medical, dental, transportation, funeral expenses, moving and storage fees, personal property loss and child care;
- Low-interest disaster loans from SBA to homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes to cover losses not fully compensated by insurance;
- Help available in most languages, and information on the registration process is available in ASL at fema.gov/media-library/assets/videos/111546.
A FEMA-contracted housing inspector may contact the applicant to schedule an appointment to visit the home depending on the type and source of storm-related damage. Inspectors have photo ID and carry the applicant’s FEMA registration number
Inspectors are not authorized to approve applications, ask for bank account information, or charge for inspections. FEMA does not endorse any inspection or contract services. They will ask for proof of ownership (homeowners) or occupancy (renters, at time of disaster damage).
FEMA’s contracted housing inspectors verify disaster damage; they do not need to document all damage. They ask about damage to the structure and building systems and major appliances, and they enter the information electronically into FEMA computers.
An inspection generally requires 20-45 minutes to complete the assessment. To speed the process, applicants should keep appointments, alert inspectors to other disaster-related needs and provide photos and repair contracts for disaster repairs already made.
For updates on the Arkansas response and recovery, follow the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (@AR_Emergencies) on Twitter and Facebook and adem.arkansas.gov. Additional information is available at fema.gov/disaster/4318.
For information about SBA’s disaster assistance, call 800-659-2955, email email@example.com, or visit SBA’s website at SBA.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339.
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.