Creek Fire victims can register for federal disaster assistance

Local News

FILE -Charred trees and burning embers remain amid fire-ravaged homes during the Creek fire in Auberry, Fresno County on September 11, 2020. (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images, FILE)

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — Creek Fire victims in Fresno and Madera counties are now able to register for disaster assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The assistance is for “individuals who lost their home or sustained other losses” in the Creek Fire, officials said.

FEMA gives eligible survivors financial awards to help them pay for such needs as rent, home repair or replacement; medical, dental or funeral costs, and other serious disaster-related expenses.

The deadline to apply for disaster assistance is Dec. 15.

Here is all the information needed to apply:

Survivors who reside in Fresno and Madera counties can apply online at DisasterAssistance.gov, downloading and using the FEMA app on your smartphone or tablet, or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 between 7 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. PDT. The helpline has specialists who speak many different languages.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability and use a Text Telephone (TTY), you may call 800-462-7585.

Applicants will be asked for the following information:

  • Social Security Number
  • Insurance policy information
  • Address of the damaged primary dwelling
  • A description of disaster-caused damage and losses
  • Current mailing address
  • Current telephone number
  • Total household annual income
  • Routing and account number of your checking or savings account (for direct transfer to your bank account)

Low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) are available for businesses of all sizes (including landlords), private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters. Disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries.

Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339.

FEMA grants do not have to be repaid. FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid or other federal benefits.

Registering with FEMA is required for federal aid, even if a survivor has registered with another disaster-relief organization, such as the American Red Cross. Survivors should register even if they have insurance.

FEMA cannot duplicate insurance payments, but underinsured applicants may receive help after their claims have been settled.

For more information on California recovery, visit the disaster web page at www.fema.gov/disaster/4569,  Twitter at https://www.twitter.com/femaregion9 and the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services website at http://www.caloes.ca.gov/.

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