Local Survivors Get Help From Disaster Assistance Team

November 6, 2016  //  

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Virginia citizens in the cities of Chesapeake and Virginia Beach will begin to see Disaster Survivor Assistance teams in certain affected disaster areas beginning as early as this week.

These community outreach teams are disaster recovery specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM). The teams will be canvasing the impacted areas to help survivors register for FEMA assistance. They can also check and verify information already provided by survivors, update their records, and discuss next steps in their recovery process.

You’ll know if the person knocking on your door is a FEMA representative because they will have official identification around their neck or pinned to their jackets. Team members also are meeting with representatives of community-based agencies, local leaders, and public officials.

It’s important to remember that if you were impacted by Hurricane Matthew in Chesapeake, Newport News, Norfolk, or Virginia Beach, you don’t have to wait to see a Disaster Survivor Assistance team in your area to register for FEMA assistance.

Survivors are encouraged to register with FEMA as soon as possible. You can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov, on the FEMA Mobile App, or by calling 800-621-3362 (FEMA).

Applicants who use 711 or Video Relay Service may also call 800-621-3362. People who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. The toll-free numbers are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week.

Assistance for eligible survivors can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, and for other serious disaster-related needs, such as medical and dental expenses or funeral and burial costs. Long-term, low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) may also be available to cover losses not fully compensated by insurance and that do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations.

Survivors should contact their own insurance company to file their insurance claim. FEMA is unable to duplicate insurance payments. However, those without insurance or those who are underinsured may be eligible for help after their insurance claims have been settled.

For more information visit FEMA.gov/disaster/4291.


FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status.  If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.

Additional information about this disaster is available at FEMA.gov and VAemergency.gov.


Federal Emergency Management Agency / Virginia Department of Emergency Management

November 5, 2016

DR-4291-VA NR-02

News Desk: 540-686-2972

Be ready. Be willing to help.

Virginia Disaster Relief Fund