Residents Urged to Follow the Instructions of Local Officials, Register for FEMA Assistance
WASHINGTON – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to support state and local response efforts to the flooding in Colorado through its National Watch Center in Washington and its Regional Response Coordination Response Center in Denver, Colo. FEMA urges residents to continue to listen carefully to instructions from their local officials and take recommended protective measures to safeguard life and property while response efforts continue. Impacted residents can apply for federal assistance by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or visiting www.disasterassistance.gov.
At the President’s direction, FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate today traveled to Colorado today to meet with federal, state and local officials about ongoing response and recovery efforts. On Sunday, President Barack Obama convened a call with Governor John Hickenlooper to receive an update on the situation in Colorado and express his concern for the citizens impacted by the historic flooding, including those individuals still missing, and reinforced his commitment to providing the necessary federal support to the state and local efforts.
On Saturday, President Obama declared a major disaster in Colorado and authorized federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the affected areas, including the availability of federal funds for affected individuals in disaster-affected areas, including Boulder County. The declaration has been expanded to include Adams, Larimer and Weld counties. The President’s declaration makes federal assistance available to individuals in these affected areas for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners in their recovery.
“FEMA continues to deploy resources in support of state and local response efforts, and to support residents and businesses in their recovery,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. “If you’ve been impacted by the flooding, let your family and friends know that you are safe and register with FEMA.”
Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in the declared counties can apply for assistance by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Disaster survivors who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY, should call 1-800-462-7585 directly; for those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362. Those in the affected area with access to the internet may register by Web-enabled mobile device at m.fema.gov, or online at www.disasterassistance.gov.
The President’s major disaster declaration also makes federal funding available to state and eligible local governments and certain non-profit organizations to support emergency work in Adams, Boulder, Larimer and Weld counties to save lives, protect property and remove debris.
Nearly 400 FEMA personnel are on the ground in Colorado to support response efforts. This includes the following personnel and teams:
- Three Disaster Survivor Assistance Teams are in impacted communities to assist disaster survivors with immediate needs and to register for assistance.
- Two Incident Management Assistance Teams (IMATs) and a liaison officer on site at the Colorado emergency operations center to coordinate with state and local officials to identify needs and shortfalls impacting disaster response.
- Five federal urban search and rescue teams – Colorado Task Force 1 activated by the state, Missouri Task Force 1, Utah Task Force 1, Nebraska Task Force 1 and Nevada Task Force 1 – are on the ground to support search and rescue operations in hard hit areas.
Also, a FEMA Incident Response Vehicle is in Colorado providing communications support to the emergency operations center for the town of Lyons. FEMA proactively staged commodities closer to the hardest hit areas and areas potentially affected by the severe weather and flooding. More than 130,000 liters of water, 110,000 meals and other supplies have been delivered to Incident Support Bases established by FEMA. These resources are being provided to the state as needed and requested. FEMA has identified additional teams and personnel to support the state should they be needed and requested.
Two interagency Incident Management Teams, including response personnel and assets from the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Department of Interior, and state and local wildland fire agencies and Bureau of Land Management, are helping to coordinate emergency response operations in support of the state and local governments in Boulder and Larimer counties.
Direct federal assistance also is available through the President’s emergency declaration for Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Clear Creek, Denver, El Paso Fremont, Jefferson, Larimer, Logan, Morgan, Pueblo, Washington and Weld counties.
According to the National Weather Service, the source of official severe weather watches and warnings, flooding advisories remain in effect for several areas in Colorado. It may take several days or longer for river levels to crest and begin to recede.
Here are a few safety tips to help keep you safe:
- Avoid flooded areas. Turn Around, Don’t Drown.
- Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.
- For those who are unable to return home, emergency shelters are open. Al list of open shelter can be found online at www.coemergency.com or at www.redcross.org. Residents looking for assistance also are encouraged to call 2-1-1.
- The Red Cross Safe and Well secure website provides a way for people to find information on people affected by the flooding, so friends and family know they are safe. To register, visit www.redcross.org/safeandwell. Open Red Cross shelters can also be found on www.redcross.org.
- We urge all those in affected or potentially affected areas to monitor NOAA Weather Radio and their local radio or TV stations news for severe weather updates and to follow the directions and warnings provided by their state, local and tribal officials.
The Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management has established a Web portal www.helpcoloradonow.org to coordinate donations and volunteers. Donating cash is the preferred method of giving because it offers voluntary agencies the most flexibility in obtaining the urgent-needed resources and provides money into the local economy to help businesses recover as well.