Gov. Jay Nixon today sent joint federal and state damage assessment teams to 28 counties in southern Missouri that were affected by the May 8 storm system that brought tornadoes, straight line winds and flash flooding. The teams will canvass areas with local officials, verifying damage to homes and businesses from the storm to support the Governor's request for Federal Disaster Assistance.
"It is imperative that our citizens receive help to recover from last week's devastating storms," Gov. Nixon said. "Many communities are still without power, and we are working diligently with local officials and the utility companies to expedite the recovery effort."
The joint damage assessment teams are comprised of representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), the Small Business Administration (SBA) and local government. Gov. Nixon said the teams initially will look at losses in 28 counties. As local damage information becomes available, additional counties may be added to the joint damage assessment visits.
The first counties to be visited are Barry, Barton, Bollinger, Camden, Cape Girardeau, Christian, Dade, Dallas, Dent, Greene, Howell, Iron, Jasper, Laclede, Lawrence, Madison, Newton, Oregon, Perry, Polk, Reynolds, Ripley, St Francois, Ste Genevieve, Shannon, Stone, Texas and Webster.
On Friday, Gov. Nixon declared a state of emergency, which activated the State Emergency Operations Center to aid local communities with resource requests. On May 9, the Governor conducted an aerial and ground assessment of some of the hardest hit areas of southwest Missouri, with stops in Carl Junction and Fair Grove. He was joined by Missouri Department of Public Safety Director John M. Britt; Brig. Gen. Stephen Danner, Adjutant General of the Missouri National Guard; and Col. James Keathley, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol.