Disaster Recovery Center soon to be a reality - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Disaster Recovery Center soon to be a reality

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March 4, 2007

Americus -- Tornado recovery progress is being made as quickly as possible. Plans for a "Disaster Recovery Center" are underway and will soon be running to help affected residents.

The tornado torn trees and debris are being cleaned up alongside the front of Sumter Regional Hospital. Residents survey homes shredded to bits and pieces. Roads are blocked as power crews continue restoring power.

These are the steps toward recovery in Americus.  "A lot of good people here from throughout the state, and other states here helping us to deal with this," said Lynn Taylor. Among those people... volunteers, EMS workers, power crews, the National Guard, GEMA and FEMA, who says the federal government is providing money toward recovery.

"They may be eligible for grants or low loans to help with the long- term recovery effort that s going to be needed," said FEMA Public Information Officer Gene Romano. And many may need that assistance. The storm destroyed people's property, left businesses gutted from the inside out, and left the hospital out of commission. County officials are busy organizing a central Disaster Recovery Center for affected business owners and residents to get the help they need. "It's a large warehouse facility that will have agencies from throughout the state.

FEMA, GEMA, assistance agencies so that people will be evaluated for their needs, and they can determine the amount of services will be determined to help these people through this time," said Taylor. A time of broken homes, business, and broken lives. Each person affected, taking storm recovery one day at a time. 

 The Disaster Recovery Center will be up and running at the corner of Martin Luther King and Rucker Streets by noon Monday, open from 8 to 6:30 daily from then on.

Organizers ask you have the following information on hand if you come. A Phone Number, Social Security Number, Current Mailing Address, Address of damaged property, description of damages, and insurance information if you have it.

Another reminder from officials- a dusk to dawn curfew remains in effect in Americus. Several people have been arrested in Americus for looting.