South Carolina storm survivors urged to register for disaster assistance

Charleston Flooding | arbor oaks summerville brandon chambers
Arbor Oaks, Summerville (Courtesy: Brandon Chambers)

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Homeowners, renters and business owners affected by the recent flooding in South Carolina can now register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency for disaster assistance.

The presidential disaster declaration makes federal assistance available to eligible individuals and business owners in Berkeley, Calhoun, Charleston, Clarendon, Darlington, Dorchester, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Kershaw, Lee, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter and Williamsburg counties.

Survivors in the designated South Carolina counties can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov. Applicants may also call 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. If you use Video Relay Services, call 800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 24 hours a day until further notice. Multilingual operators are available.

Assistance can include money for temporary housing and essential home repairs, and for other serious disaster-related needs, such as medical and dental expenses or funeral and burial costs. Low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Administration may also be available to cover losses not fully compensated by insurance.

South Carolina survivors should register with FEMA even if they have insurance. FEMA cannot duplicate insurance payments, but under-insured applicants may receive help after their insurance claims have been settled.

For questions about flood insurance, National Flood Insurance Program policyholders can call 800-621-3362, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. until further notice.

Registering with FEMA is required for federal aid, even if a survivor has registered with another disaster-relief organization. FEMA registrants must use the name that appears on their Social Security card.

Applicants will be asked for the following information:

  • Social Security number
  • Address of the damaged home or apartment
  • Description of the damage
  • Information about insurance coverage
  • A current contact telephone number
  • An address where they can receive mail
  • Bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit of funds

OPCON Level:
The Emergency Operations Center moved to Operational Condition 3 (OPCON 3) at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday evening, which means disaster or emergency situation likely or imminent. Full or partial activation of the Charleston County Emergency Operations Center; activate Charleston County Emergency Operations Plan. Read more at CharlestonCounty.org.

Additional County Information:
Early registration is open for the State of South Carolina for flood damage, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Currently, Berkeley, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter and Williamsburg counties are on the list of eligible counties for federal declaration for Individual Assistance. This list may later include other counties based on damage assessment reports. If your county is on the current list, you may go ahead and complete an application now. Please visit the FEMA website listed below and apply online to start your application.

Those without Internet access, Charleston County Public Libraries have computers with Internet access that may be utilized. Please note, two of the 16 library branches are not open Tuesday, Oct. 6 due to flooding damage. Those include the West Ashley Branch in South Windermere and the POE Branch on Sullivan’s Island. Please see attachment for list of library branches.

A local disaster recovery center will be opened at a later date. More information will be provided about this as it becomes available.

Charleston County is also communicating with our tri-county partners to set up a volunteer coordination effort to match needs and volunteers. We will utilize our Citizen Emergency Information Line at 843-746-3900 as this effort evolves and provide updates as needed.

County Facilities Information:
Court
Charleston County Circuit and Family Court hearings are canceled for the remainder of the week. This includes General Sessions, Common Pleas (jury and non-jury), Grand jury and Family Court.

We have released all jurors who were supposed to report on October 5, 2015 for the remainder of the week.  They do not need to report and their jury service is complete.

The Judicial Center will be open starting tomorrow, Oct. 7 for administrative purposes and filings. Hearings will not be taking place the remainder of the week.

Other Facilities
All Charleston County facilities will remain open. The Bees Ferry Landfill and Convenience Centers remain open and recycling collection resumes.

Roadway Closure
Main Road between River Road and Highway 17 in Charleston County remains closed because water remains on the roadway. The County’s Public Works Department and the South Carolina Department of Transportation are working to clear the roadway. The County is working to reopen the road. Please check the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office Twitter page and local media for updates on the road’s condition.

Harbor View Road will be closed and a detour route will be in effect overnight at 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. This will be in an effort to reduce standing water on the roadway by use of pumps that will need to cross Harbor View Road. The detour will be between Fort Sumter Drive and Quail Drive. Residents will have access to their homes at all times. Please follow instructions on message boards and be aware of crews in the area.

Damage Assessment:
Below is contact information for citizens to call and report damage from the severe weather based on where they live:

  • Town of Kiawah: 843-768-9166
  • City of Charleston: 843-724-7320
  • Isle of Palms: 843-886-9912
  • Town of Mount Pleasant: 843-884-5184
  • Sullivan’s Island: 843-883-3198
  • City of North Charleston: 843-740-2564

If you are in the Unincorporated Charleston County or one of the following municipalities call 843-202-6930.

  • Town of Awendaw
  • Town of Hollywood
  • Town of James Island
  • Town of Lincolnville
  • Town of McClellanville
  • Town of Meggett
  • Town of Ravenel
  • Town of Rockville
  • Town of Seabrook Island

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