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Acadiana Lifestyle

Surviving the Great Flood of 2016: What now?

08/30/2016 02:30PM ● Published by Christy Quebedeaux

By Wynce Nolley


Beginning Thursday, Aug. 11, a steady deluge of rain fell for 39 straight hours delivering as much as two feet of rainfall across South Louisiana and caught nearly everyone completely off guard. 
According to the United Way of Iberia, there is an estimated 3,500 - 4,000 homes affected by the flooding in Iberia Parish alone, with upwards of 12,000 - 15,000 individuals who received direct impact from the flooding. 
Estimates from the United Way show that the historic flooding lead to an incredible 6.9 trillion gallons of rain falling on this corner of the state, which translates to roughly 10.4 million olympic size swimming pools. 
This guide includes critical disaster relief information from the Governor’s Office as well as donation information from the United Way of Iberia and other community relief efforts. 

1. REGISTER WITH FEMA
Louisiana disaster survivors are urged to register for federal disaster assistance with FEMA. The claim number for the flooding in Louisiana is 4277. When you have completed the FEMA registration, you will be assigned a FEMA registration number. This will be a 9-digit number that will start with 50 or 45.
Individuals and business owners in the designated parishes who had storm or flood damage should register for “Individual Assistance” with FEMA in the following ways: 
  • By phone at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)
  • People who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY should call 1-800-462-7585
  • For those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362

2. NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM
If you have flood insurance, you must also file a flood insurance claim with your insurance company. The FEMA Call Center is open for policyholders who need assistance.
  • Everyone is urged to contact their insurance company to file their individual claims.
  • Call 1-800-621-3362 Monday to Friday 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. and select Option 2 for the FEMA call center. Staff will be assisting policyholders with information regarding their flood insurance policy, offer technical guidance to aid in recovery and provide answers to complicated and general questions about the NFIP.

2. HOUSING HELP
  • INITIAL HELP WITH A PLACE TO STAY
  • The Transitional Shelter Assistance Program is the FEMA program for direct-pay hotel rooms
  • Louisiana Housing Corporation Help to Find House/ Apartment to Rent (lahousingsearch.org)
  • INTERIM HOUSING 
  • Manufactured Housing Units (larger mobile homes than FEMA trailers)
  • Multi-Family Lease and Repair Program (FEMA funding to repair properties not in commerce so that eligible FEMA applicants may be placed in the rental units)
  • SHELTER AT HOME PROGRAM 
  • In this program, FEMA will pay for very basic repairs so a homeowner and family can shelter safely in their own home while rebuilding.
 
3. DISASTER FOOD STAMPS (DSNAP) 
DSNAP provides eligible households - who do not currently receive SNAP benefits - with help buying groceries due to lost income or damages following a disaster.

4. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION LOANS FOR INDIVIDUALS
Homeowners can borrow up to $200,000 at as low as 1.56 % interest rate–with a term of up to 30 years–to repair or replace their primary residence, and a loan of up to $40,000 is available for renters/homeowners to replace their contents.
 
5. BUSINESS RECOVERY RESOURCES
The U.S. Small Business Administration, Louisiana Economic Development and Louisiana Small Business Development Centers are partnering to provide a wide range of services to businesses impacted by the severe storms and flooding at Business Recovery Centers opening in areas affected.

6. DISASTER UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE
There is temporary monetary assistance to businesses and residents whose employment or self-employment was lost or interrupted as a result of the flooding.

7. TAX INFORMATION & FILING AND PAYMENT RELIEF
Tax filing and payment relief are available to Louisiana taxpayers whose homes, principal places of business and critical tax records are in areas of the state declared federal disaster areas. The Department of Revenue has also posted to its website a list of frequently asked questions on potential tax issues related to disaster recovery.

8. OFFICE OF MOTOR VEHICLE ASSISTANCE
The OMV is offering FREE duplicate vehicle titles, driver's licenses, ID cards, vehicle registrations and mobility impaired placards that are available to anyone who lost those documents due to the flood at local OMV offices. For more information on this or any other flood-related motor vehicles issues, call 844-892-4266 or visit www.expresslane.org.

9. HELPFUL PHONE NUMBERS & WEBLINKS
  • Pet Rescue/Triage:  225-952-8168
  • Register for free home cleanup assistance:  1-800-451-1954
  • Find a loved one in a state-run shelter:  225-219-5452
  • Find a loved one in a Red Cross shelter:  1-866-438-4636
  • Emergency preparedness and response information: emergency.la.gov.

10. DONATIONS
The United Way of Iberia is currently accepting any and all donations as part of its Community Drive to aid in the recovery and relief efforts related to the Great Flood of 2016 in Iberia Parish. They are partnering with the Iberia Parish Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and Iberia Community Foundation to collect and distribute contributions. United Way is serving as the Donation Center for Iberia Parish and will also be working with various humanitarian partners within the community. 
The following is a list of those items being collected. Additionally, there are options for monetary giving. 
  • Pillows
  • Blankets
  • Diapers
  • Baby Food & Formula
  • Toilet Paper
  • Bottled Water
  • Non-Perishable Food Items
  • Buckets & Mops
  • Rubber Gloves & Masks
  • New, Unopened Underwear & Socks (All Sizes)
  • Personal Hygiene Products
  • Shampoo & Soap
  • Deodorant
  • School Supplies & Uniforms
  • Medium & Large Plastic Storage Boxes

The following is a list of Donation Collection and Mass Distribution Sites (via KATC):
  • New Iberia
  • United Way of Iberia, 449 E. St. Peter St., New Iberia (corner of Bank & St. Peter Streets)
  • Monday - Thursday from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. & Friday from  8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • Call 337-364-0424 to arrange a delivery time 
  • Lafayette
  • Lafayette Eagle Wholesale Building 413 Coolidge St., Lafayette 
  • From 9 a.m. until 7 p.m.
  • Youngsville Bead Busters 2034 Bonin Road, Youngsville 
  • From 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. 
  • Vermilion 
  • Abbeville Tiffany Plaza (Former Stage Store) 2770 Rodeo Road, Abbeville
  • From Mon-Sat 8am - 12pm (No donations on Sunday) 

The following is a list of Donation Collection ONLY (via KATC):
  • St. Landry
  • Opelousas Former Sav-A-Lot behind Taco Bell 619 Creswell Lane, Opelousas
  • Monday - Saturday from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.
  • Sunday from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m.
 
The following is a list of Public Collection & Distribution Sites (via KATC):
  • New Iberia
  • Iberia Old Wholesome Bread 305 Robertson Street, New Iberia
  • Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. (residents of Iberia Parish only)
  • Lafayette
  • Lafayette Eagle Wholesale Building 413 Coolidge St., Lafayette 
  • From 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. 
  • Contact Daniel Partain or Alice Culotta at 337-280-4411
  • Youngsville Beads for Less 2034 Bonin Road, Youngsville Pastor Faulk 10:00 am until 7:00 pm 654-8769
  • Vermilion
  • Abbeville Tiffany Plaza (Former Stage Store) 2770 Rodeo Road, Abbeville 1:00 pm until 6:00 pm 

Life+Leisure The Great Flood of 2016 flood victims United Way of Iberia floodwaters Louisiana Flood
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