The White House and FEMA have granted Governor Roy Cooper’s Aug. 27 request for a major disaster declaration for seven North Carolina counties that were hit hard by floods after Tropical Storm Fred.
“This federal disaster declaration will help provide assistance for Western North Carolina communities to rebuild stronger and smarter, and I appreciate the president’s approval of our request,” said Gov. Cooper.
The declaration for Individual Assistance covers Buncombe, Haywood and Transylvania counties. Residents of these counties may apply for Federal disaster assistance online at disasterassistance.gov or via telephone at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or via the FEMA app.
Disaster Recovery Centers will open in the coming days for residents to apply for disaster assistance in person.
The declaration for Public Assistance covers Avery, Buncombe, Haywood, Madison, Transylvania, Yancey and Watauga counties. It provides federal reimbursement to county and state governments and some nonprofit organizations for much of the cost to respond to the storm and repair damaged infrastructure. This includes federal reimbursement for debris removal as well as search and rescue operations, hazardous material clean up, meals, generators, fuel and more.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Fred dumped several inches of rain across western North Carolina, resulting in devastating flooding and landslides. Six deaths were attributed to the storm that caused record-setting floods along the Pigeon River. Damage estimates to public infrastructure total more than $18.7 million. Damage estimates to private property include 56 homes destroyed and more than 200 homes that suffered major damage.