SOUTHEAST MISSOURI (KFVS) - Residents of 33 Missouri counties who have been affected by the recent severe storms and flooding may soon see FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) teams and home inspectors in their neighborhoods.
Counties in southeast Missouri that have been visited are Cape Girardeau,St. Francois and Ste. Genevieve.
"For these families that experienced this catastrophic event, they are trying to put their lives back together again," Deanna Frazier, FEMA Media Relations Specialist said. "And one of the ways they can do that is by registering for FEMA assistance. Hopefully then, they will start on their road to recovery."
DSA teams will offer survivors registration assistance, up-to-date information on their application status, on-the-spot needs assessments and referrals to help fill any outstanding needs.
Around 10 days after one registers, an inspector will come and inspect the home or business for damages and determine what they're eligible for. Victims can be eligible for rental assistance if displaced for up to three months, home repairs, personal property, etc.
After that, people can expect a determination letter about seven to 10 days after inspection.
Once they receive determination letter, a check may also be included.
The whole process from registration to a person receiving their check could take a minimum three to four weeks after registering.
Home inspectors will also be in the field verifying damages for those who have applied for federal assistance. Inspectors will contact homeowners and renters to schedule a time to meet to verify flood damages that occurred Dec. 23, 2015 through Jan. 9, 2016.
Individuals or business owners that apply for a disaster loan with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) may also be contacted by a loss verifier who will inspect the damaged property.
"To give you an idea, the average FEMA grant is $2,500," Frazier said. "And so the maximum grant is $33,000. So FEMA assistance is not going to make these families whole again. But it will help them get in a safe, sanitary and functional environment where they can begin their recovery process."
Residents who were affected can apply for assistance online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call (800)-621-3362 or (TTY) (800)-462-7585, from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Those who use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services can call (800)-621-3362.
The application deadline is March 21.