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Plan Ahead Before Returning Home

Release Date Release Number
NR 018

BATON ROUGE, La. – As Hurricane Laura survivors begin to reenter their homes, FEMA stresses the importance of following guidance from your local officials.

Prepare Before You Go

Local officials stress the need to be prepared. Many areas still do not have electricity.

Those who return should bring plenty of supplies. Consider all your potential needs for food, water, medication, pets, mosquito repellent, batteries, portable cellphone chargers and other important items.

Utility work and debris removal is ongoing in affected communities. The state advises survivors to limit or avoid travel where crews are working.

Structural Safety

Walk carefully around the outside of your home and property and check for loose power lines, gas leaks and structural damage. If you have any doubts about safety, have your residence inspected by a qualified building inspector or structural engineer before entering.

Enter your home carefully and check for damage.  Be aware of loose boards and slippery floors. If your home looks like it may collapse, leave immediately.

Do not enter if you smell gas or floodwater remains around the building.

For more information on what to look for when reentering your home, go online to ready.gov/returning-home.

Register for Federal Assistance

You may not be able stay in your home because of the damage. FEMA may be able to provide grants to repair your home to make it safe, sanitary and functional as well as temporary expenses to rent an apartment, home or travel trailer.

Hurricane Laura survivors may apply for FEMA help online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by downloading the FEMA app or by calling 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585.

For a list of Hurricane Laura resources, go online to gov.louisiana.gov/page/hurricane-laura-resources.

For the latest information on Hurricane Laura, visit www.fema.gov/disaster/4559 or follow the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at twitter.com/FEMARegion6.

Last updated September 12, 2020