FEMA Personnel in Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Continue to Support Recovery Efforts Following Impact of Typhoon Mawar

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Release Date:
May 31, 2023

WASHINGTON -- FEMA continues coordinating meal, supplies and generator deliveries in Guam with local, territorial, federal, nonprofit organizations and private sector partners to help residents recover. 

On Wednesday, FEMA Associate Administrator Anne Bink and Region 9 Regional Administrator Bob Fenton met with Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands Gov. Arnold Palacios and other officials on response and recovery updates. Gov. Palacios’ request for a major disaster declaration has been received and is under consideration.

Guam residents can register for federal assistance by visiting DisasterAssistance.gov, through the FEMA App, or by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362). Residents who use a relay service, such as video relay or captioned telephone service, can give the FEMA operator the number for that service. FEMA is working with local and territorial officials to determine Disaster Recovery Center locations. Once open, survivors can visit these centers to receive one-on-one help with their disaster registration process and emergency assistance.

Following President Biden’s amended Major Disaster Declaration for Guam on Sunday, FEMA has received nearly 3,400 registrations for assistance, helping survivors jumpstart their recovery. About 630 FEMA personnel are supporting response and recovery efforts in Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, with over 315 staff in Guam. Additional Disaster Survivor Assistance Teams are being deployed to Guam to help survivors register for federal assistance. A flood watch remains in effect for Guam through late Sunday night due to heavy rains and residents can expect additional flash flooding and power outage fluctuations. Pay attention to local authorities and avoid driving or walking through flooded areas.

After a disaster, people want to help, but it’s important to donate responsibly. When people support voluntary organizations with financial contributions, it helps ensure a steady flow of important services to the people in need. You can find a voluntary organization to support by visiting the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster’s website at NVOAD.org. FEMA is coordinating with its network of Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster to provide support and humanitarian aid. Feeding and bottled water operations continue as needed and requested by the territory and the commonwealth officials:

  • The American Red Cross is providing 1,200 meals per day and delivering emergency relief supplies to about 3,000 households, which includes clean up kits to help survivors with their recovery. People who are interested in volunteering can visit the American Red Cross Relief site at the Hilton Guam Resort and Spa or call 1-800-733-2767 for more information.
  • The Salvation Army is delivering food to the Guam’s Department of Youth Affairs correctional facility.

Federal, Territorial, Commonwealth and Voluntary Actions

  • Survivors who are covered by insurance should file a claim with their insurance company or agent as soon as they can. Next, they should apply for FEMA disaster assistance, which may include funding to repair or replace their homes, temporary housing resources, access to low-interest loans or other programs to help them jumpstart their recovery.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has about 135 responders in Guam supporting temporary power, temporary roofing and debris missions. The first generator has been installed to help provide water to a village of roughly 6,000 residents.
  • Residents who need to protect their property should make emergency repairs now, if possible, particularly if you have wet bedding, carpet or furniture that should be disposed of before mold becomes a problem. Do not wait for a FEMA inspector, but make sure to take photographs, document the damage, keep your receipts and take necessary actions to protect your property.
  • Farmers who suffered crop loss should document their losses and contact 671-300-7972-73 or email agriculture@doagguam.gov for more information on available assistance.
  • The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting underwater surveys of transit channels and piers to remove any storm-related debris while its pollution response teams continue to assess vessels in the area.
  • Members of the Hawaii National Guard are deployed to supplement Guam National Guard soldiers through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.
  • The Guam Power Authority continues its restoration efforts, reporting more than 28% of customer demand is restored, with crews working 24-hour shifts. The authority has restored 95.8% of substation energization, which includes power to 23 of 24 critical substations that will result in increased power to more residents.
  • The Guam Waterworks Authority reports that 50% of water systems are online serving nearly 77,000 customers. GWA is working with FEMA to expedite generators to high-producing well sites, and has two currently being deployed, with an additional eight generator installations in progress for pump stations.
  • Nearly 50% of cell towers are now operational in Guam.
  • Four shelters remain open in Guam with an overnight population of more than 750.
  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has a 14-person team supporting response activities in Guam Memorial Hospital and a 15-person team supporting Guam Regional Medical City Hospital.
  • The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that low-interest federal disaster loans are now available to Guam businesses and residents who were affected by Typhoon Mawar. To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, survivors must first register at DisasterAssistance.gov.
    • Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. 
    • Disaster loans up to $200,000 may be available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate.
    • Homeowners and renters may be eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property, including personal vehicles.
    • Interest rates can be as low as 4% for businesses, 2.375% for private nonprofit organizations and 2.5% for homeowners and renters with terms up to 30 years.
  • The Bank of Guam announced it is automatically deferring payments on personal loans and credit cards for Guam and Rota accounts for three months. Affected customers in Saipan and Tinian may request deferment arrangements at any branch locations or by emailing consumerbanking@bankofguam.com.
  • The National Disaster Distress Helpline remains activated and anyone who has been affected by Typhoon Mawar can call 1-800-985-5990 for immediate counseling and support. Survivors in Guam that may be experiencing a mental health or substance abuse crisis can call or text the Guam Behavioral Health and Wellness Center Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by dialing 988.

Safety Messages

  • Make sure food is safe to eat. Residents should throw out any perishable food in their refrigerator that has not been refrigerated at 40° F degrees or lower or if their refrigerator has been without power for over four hours. Never taste food to determine if it is safe to eat.
  • Be safe using generators. Generators can help during a power outage but can present serious health and safety risks. Only use a generator outdoors and far from open doors and windows to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Visit Ready.gov/power-outages for more on how to use generators safely.  
  • Avoid downed power or utility lines. They may be live with deadly voltage. Stay away and report them immediately to your power or utility company. Do not cut or cover cables with debris.
  • Exercise caution when cleaning and making repairs. Residents who are returning home, should:
    • Wear protective clothing and appropriate face coverings or masks if cleaning mold or other debris, and always work with someone else.
    • Document any damage with photographs and contact your insurance company so you can quickly file a claim.
    • Ask for help if moving heavy debris in or around your home.
  • Boil or use bottled water. As water boil advisories remain in effect for parts of CNMI and the entire island of Guam, residents should continue to use bottled water or boil their water for cooking, drinking and hygiene.
  • Stay tuned to local authorities. With heavy rains forecasted, residents should take these precautions:
    • If driving, be alert for low visibilities and slippery roads in heavy rain.
    • Slow down where water is ponding on the road.
    • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
    • Do not camp, park or hike along streams and rivers.

To learn more about the Typhoon Mawar response and recovery efforts, visit FEMA.gov.

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