As people in the state of North Carolina begin to pick up the pieces left in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, Governor Roy Cooper continues to take action to help storm survivors recover while mourning the lives lost to the storm.
The state medical examiner’s office has determined an additional death was related to the storm, the 36th connected to Hurricane Florence. The latest casualty reported was a 67-year old man who died from injuries he received while cleaning up storm debris in Craven County.
“This deadly storm has left a lasting impact on families, neighborhoods and communities across a wide swath of our state,” Gov. Cooper said. “Now is the time to pull together to help our fellow North Carolinians recover from Hurricane Florence and rebuild even stronger, and smarter, than before.”
The Governor continues to travel to areas hit hard by the storm, touring damage and meeting with storm survivors, local officials and first responders in Wayne and Lenoir counties today.
Governor Cooper announced last night that his request for major federal disaster assistance for nine additional counties impacted by the hurricane has been approved. In total, 27 counties have now been approved for individual assistance and public assistance from FEMA. More than $33.2 million in disaster assistance funds have been approved after about 88,000 North Carolinians registered to receive aid.
Anyone with a home damaged by Florence is encouraged to begin the disaster assistance registration process by calling 1-800-621-FEMA to register via telephone or by visiting disasterassistance.gov to register online. If you have a homeowner’s or flood insurance policy, file your insurance claim immediately, before applying for disaster assistance. Do not wait to begin your cleanup and repairs. Take photos of all damage and save all receipts.
When Hurricane Florence hit North Carolina, she packed high winds and ferocious storm surge, as well as record rainfall that caused epic flooding in the eastern part of the state. Debris and high water closed roads across the state. As of 5 pm today, road closures are down to 327 from a peak of 1,600 just after the storm. Property damage and power outages were widespread, and tens of thousands of families had to take refuge in emergency shelters. As of 5 pm today, fewer than 1,800 people remain in shelters, including people who may have lacked permanent housing prior to the storm.
Transitional Sheltering Assistance Become Available
Transitional Sheltering Assistance (TSA) is now available to residents in eight counties: Brunswick, Carteret, Craven, Columbus, New Haven, Onslow, Pender or Robeson. TSA is a temporary housing program that can help fill a gap until survivors identify short or long-term housing solutions. Eligible survivors are being notified of their eligibility through an automated phone call, text message, and/or email depending upon the method of communication they selected when they registered with FEMA for assistance. To locate participating hotels, visit disasterassistance.gov, scroll down to the Quick Links section, and click on “TSA Hotel Locator.” You can also call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-FEMA or TTY 800-462-7585.
Executive Orders Help Flood Victims, Medical Volunteers
The Governor also signed two executive orders to help with storm recovery. Executive Order 63 suspends the enforcement of requirements regarding salvaged vehicles in the state, to help storm victims by making it easier for them to transfer a flooded car to an insurance company for purposes of claiming the loss.
Executive Order 64 temporarily waives licensing requirements for behavioral health care professionals from other states, so long as the professionals are licensed and in good standing in another state, so they can volunteer their services to help treat victims of the hurricane in North Carolina. Both in-state and out-of-state behavioral health professionals can help by registering with the North Carolina Psychological Association’s Disaster Response Network and by contacting the American Red Cross of Eastern North Carolina, which is coordinating mental health volunteers.
Additional Information and Resources Available
The NC 211 information line can provide callers with housing, recovery and other storm-related details. Dial 2-1-1 or 888-892-1162, or text FLORENCE to 898211. The information line is staffed around the clock to connect North Carolinians to storm resources. Other resources can be obtained by visiting ncdps.gov/florence or following NC Emergency Management on Facebook and Twitter.
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