AKRON, Ala. (WIAT) — A team from FEMA is set up in Akron in Hale County to help tornado victims and accept applications from those who need assistance.
Hale County EMA director Russell Weeden says 92 homes were damaged and 31 destroyed by the storms. He’s hoping the team of federal representatives from FEMA can help victims get back on their feet.
“It lets them know there is a light at the end of the tunnel and federal assistance is coming,” Weeden said. “We’ve already given them lots of local assistance but as far as money for long-term housing and stuff that they lost, FEMA is here with boots on the ground for this disaster.”
Oak Village resident Bruce Smalley lost his home nearly two weeks ago after an EF-2 tornado destroyed the house so he signed up for FEMA assistance.
“Oh I think it’s great and it’s going to help lots of people,” Smalley said. “[The tornado] destroyed lots of lives down here.”
FEMA and the state of Alabama are opening disaster recovery centers in Autauga, Dallas and Elmore counties to assist tornado survivors. The centers open at 1 p.m. on Jan. 26 and will provide help one-on-one to people affected by the Jan. 12 severe storms, straight-line winds, and tornadoes.