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FEMA joining flood damage assessment in the St. Louis area

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Flooding in St. Louis

A vehicle drives through floodwater on Forest Park Parkway underneath Union Boulevard in St. Louis after heavy rain on Thursday, July 28, 2022. 

JEFFERSON CITY — The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be joining other agencies to help assess damage from last week’s flash floods, Gov. Mike Parson announced.

FEMA representatives will join members of other agencies in confirming whether the area needs a federal Major Disaster Declaration. Such a declaration would make federal funds available to help the recovery.

The FEMA representatives will arrive Monday to join teams already at work from the State Emergency Management Agency, along with the U.S. Small Business Administration and local emergency management officials.

The teams will verify documented damage in order to determine which federal programs can be used to help. Everyone who has damage from the storms and floods is requested to report it to their local emergency management agency if they have not already done so.

To assist people who need help after the storms and flooding, several organizations and agencies have created Multi-Agency Resource Centers. These centers provide experts in a host of post-disaster fields, such as housing, insurance, food stamp replacement, mental health counseling and other areas.

The centers will be:

Tuesday, 3-8 p.m., Element Church, 100 Mall Parkway, Unit 500, Wentzville.

Wednesday, 3-8 p.m., John F. Kennedy Community Center, 315 Howdershell Road, Florissant.

Thursday, 3-8 p.m., Centennial Commons, 7210 Olive Boulevard, University City.

Friday, City of St. Louis, time and location to be determined.

An American Red Cross shelter is also open for people who need to stay overnight at 7335 St. Charles Rock Road.

Anyone who needs assistance may call the United Way by dialing 211 or by going to 211helps.org. That is also where people can submit information to be shared with emergency management agencies and community organizations and also where to find pertinent phone numbers for everything from basic needs and child care to health, food and legal questions.

Sarah Russell, commissioner of City of St. Louis Emergency Management, said in a media briefing Sunday that her department has counted more than 1,100 homes impacted by the floods through canvassing and tracking calls to for help to the city and social services.

Rusell said that her office has seen a higher level of damage to homes from the flash floods, when compared with recent river flooding which she called a “slower event” that emergency officials are better able to prepare for.

“This is different,” she said. “This is going to improve the way that we do processes. We’re learning as we go along through this.”

More information is available at recovery.mo.gov.

Erin Heffernan of the Post-Dispatch contributed to this report.

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