Katy, Texas – April 25, 2016
- What do I do for immediate Help or Rescue?
If you are needing medical assistance or water rescue, please call 911. If you need help with debris removal or other city services, you can contact Harris County 311 at houston311.org or call 713-837-0311.
- How do I report flood damage to my home?
If you have had water inside of your home during this storm event, visit readyharris.org and complete a Home Flooding Report. This report is designed to assist the Harris County Flood Control District and the Harris County Public Infrastructure Department in determining what areas have experienced structural flooding so damage assessment teams can quickly deploy to those locations in the wake of a flood event. Your information will be sent directly to those agencies and will not be shared with anyone outside of government.
- Do I have flood insurance?
Homeowners policies don’t cover flood damage. To protect yourself from losses caused by most flooding, you may buy a separate flood insurance policy from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) runs NFIP. If your property is in a special flood hazard area, your lender will require you to have flood insurance. A special flood hazard area has a 1 percent chance of being flooded in any given year.
- What do I do if I have wind, hail, or other damage to my home?
Usually this type of damage is covered on your homeowners insurance policy. Texas law sets deadlines for insurance companies to act after you’ve filed a claim. Your company must:
- Respond within 15 days after it receives your claim in writing. It will probably ask you to document your loss.
- Accept or reject your claim within 15 days after you submit any documents it asked for. If the company rejects your claim, it must explain its reasons in writing.
- Send your check or bank draft within five business days after it agrees to pay your claim.
- I don’t have flood insurance, What Now?
Many of those affected don’t have flood insurance policies. Officials are working to determine if individuals in Harris County may be eligible for financial assistance from FEMA. Please be aware that federal funds, if available, will likely not cover all of your expenses. Please report your damage to readyharris.org and complete a Home Flooding Report. Because our area is expecting even more inclement weather, the county is still in the triage stages of recovery and still preparing for the coming rain. However, there are many faith-based entities that are helping those affected and many of these entities have volunteers to help with debris removal and even home repairs. Below are a few options:
Faithbridge United Methodist Church Helping Hands- program will send volunteers to help with clean up.
Woodlands Church-Coordinating volunteers to go into subdivisions and help with clean up.
Prince of Peace Catholic Community-Streams of Mercy program working to help in the Houston Area
Faith Assembly Church Convoy of Hope-helping with home debris removal and repairs
Harris County has also started a flood recovery resource page, that includes volunteer opportunities and resources for recovery. You can also visit the Texas Gulf Coast VOAD for more resources, including info on 211 for even more information and disaster related resources.
- With more rain headed our way, what can I do to prepare?
The Red Cross also provides some great safety tips.
While it is anticipated that a Federal Disaster Declaration will be made for our community, until such a declaration is made, resource information will be limited. When and if a declaration is made, the Harris County Recovery Network will provide current information on how to register with FEMA and when, where and how to receive recovery services. At this time, it is important that you register your home at www.readyharris.org.
For those immediately displaced and in need of finding available housing, go to Harris County Housing and Community Resource Center. For those wishing to donate funds to assist residents in the recovery process, go to www.houstonfloodrecovery.org. Landlords with available rental property interested in assisting our displaced residents are encouraged to call 877-428-8844. Meanwhile, take pictures, save receipts and register your flood damaged home at www.readyharris.org.
Roadways in the vicinity of the Addicks/Barker reservoir area, including State Highway 6 from Clay Road to Park Road may be underwater for up to six weeks. Water continues to recede on roads and side streets but many are draining slowly.
The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences is now confirming seven fatalities related to the storm. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office reports the following:
- 539 individual High Water Rescue Operations (and growing) have been performed
- 225 Civilians rescued by boat
- 18 horses rescued
- 40 canines rescued
- Operations are continuing at this time
Local fire service reports:
- Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department: 703 rescues/evacuations
- Cypress Creek EMS: 423 rescues/evacuations
- Harris County Emergency Corps: 78 rescues/evacuations
The National Weather Service reports additional rainfall is likely through Friday with skies clearing at the weekend. Partners should closely monitor forecasts.
Content Courtesy of Mike Schofield – State Representative