COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina survivors of Hurricane Florence who apply for federal help can choose to receive updates via text on mobile phones. Notifications from FEMA will still arrive by email or telephone or U.S. Postal Service to individuals who chose one of these as the preferred communication method when they applied.
FEMA’s official 5-digit texting code, 43362, appears in texts as the sender. The last four digits of the applicant’s FEMA registration number appear at the top of all text notifications, like this: FEMA ID ####. For those who choose to use text messaging, standard message and data rates apply.
Those who opt to get texts can expect to receive text message alerts with updates on their application status. For example: when a determination of eligibility for federal aid is made, when a payment is scheduled or when a letter has been mailed to the applicant requesting additional information.
Responding to a Text Alert from FEMA
Hitting “reply” is not the appropriate way to respond to a FEMA text alert. The text message will provide simple instructions for how to respond. Failing to respond is likely to delay the assistance process. Below are some common examples of text alerts and how to respond:
FEMA text alert: Requests more information.
Applicant response: Applicant logs into account on DisasterAssistance.gov for details and follows the online instructions.
FEMA text alert: Says a FEMA-contracted housing inspector was unable to contact applicant.
Applicant response: Applicant calls Disaster Assistance helpline at 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585.
FEMA text alert: Says applicant’s case has been updated.
Applicant response: Applicant logs into account on DisasterAssistance.gov to view status update.
More information about letters, alerts and messages from FEMA is available by calling the Disaster Assistance Helpline at 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585.
For more information on Hurricane Florence and South Carolina recovery, visit the S.C. Emergency Management Division website at scemd.org on social media (@SCEMD on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram), or FEMA’s Hurricane Florence disaster webpage at www.fema.gov/disaster/4394, or Facebook at www.facebook.com/FEMA, and the FEMA Region 4 Twitter account at twitter.com/FEMARegion4.