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State Asks FEMA For Preliminary Damage Assessment

A washed out road.
Julie Scribner, Courtesy

Updated 5:10 p.m. 

State emergency management officials are taking steps to seek disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency following the Halloween wind and rain storm.

Vermont Emergency Management Director Erica Bornemann has asked FEMA for a preliminary damage assessment. This is a step toward applying for a federal disaster declaration that would help pay for repairs to roadways and other public infrastructure.

More from VPR: Vermont Utilities Report Widespread Power Outages After Halloween Storm[Nov. 1]

Officials said Saturday that 12 Vermont towns report major damage from the storm. These include Fairfax, Hyde Park, Johnson, Montgomery, Richmond, Stowe, Thetford, Waterville, Williston, Wolcott, Worcester, and Weybridge, and more communities are likely to be added to the list as towns assess damage.

Meanwhile, flood warnings persist on the Missisquoi River at East Berkshire, the Lamoille River at Jeffersonville, and the Barton River near Coventry. Motorists are reminded to stay off flooded roads.

More than 22,000 customers continued to be without electric service statewide as of midday Saturday. Utilities say some customers may not see service restored until early next week.

More from Vermont Emergency Management — Tips about what to do if it's flooding in your area

Two shelters opened Friday night at Newport Municipal Offices, 222 Main Street, and St. Albans Town Educational Center, 169 South Main Street. The St. Albans shelter will close Saturday night, but the Newport shelter will remain open, and the Belvidere Central School will also be open for those who need a warm place to go or to charge cell phones.

Those with damage to their homes should contact 2-1-1 to report the damage. If you don’t reach a call specialist leave a message, they will return your call. 2-1-1 will document damage for state efforts to obtain federal aid, and to connect homeowners to appropriate services.

John worked for VPR in 2001-2021 as reporter and News Director. Previously, John was a staff writer for the Sunday Times Argus and the Sunday Rutland Herald, responsible for breaking stories and in-depth features on local issues. He has also served as Communications Director for the Vermont Health Care Authority and Bureau Chief for UPI in Montpelier.
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