Out & About in our Virtual Route 66 This Week With An Update on the Maui Fire
FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell, U.S. Fire Administrator Dr. Lori Moore-Merrell and U.S. Small Business Administration Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman continue to survey the catastrophic damage on the island and identify ways that FEMA and federal agencies can provide relief to the island. Field assessments, initial debris assessments and housing inspections are underway.
- FEMA is working closely with state, county and federal partners to aid active response efforts and to help survivors jumpstart their recovery. There are more than 250 FEMA personnel deployed to assist Hawaii residents in their greatest time of need, including 45 Disaster Survivor Assistance staff who are visiting shelters in Maui to help survivors register for assistance and identify and report any critical needs.
- FEMA is supporting efforts to get communications back up on the island. Teams are on the ground working with partner agencies and private sector communication service providers to provide temporary communications solutions while permanent restoration efforts continue. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is conducting assessments of critical infrastructure.
- Recognizing the broad diversity of impacted residents, we are working closely with state and county partners to ensure that FEMA's efforts are conducted with appropriate cultural sensitivity, and that materials are available in the languages spoken by those in need.
- Nearly 3,000 valid registrations under FEMA’s Individual Assistance program have been received so far, which provides financial assistance and direct services to eligible individuals and households.
- Those trying to locate family or loved ones can visit the Maui County Emergency Management Agency’s Family Assistance Center at the Kahului Community Center. Residents with phone access can also call the Red Cross at 1-800 RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767), select Option 4, then follow the voice prompts for "Hawaii Wildfires."
- FEMA encourages Maui residents impacted by the wildfires to register for disaster assistance. People with limited phone and internet access can register with FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance staff in person at shelters. Others can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by calling 1-800-621- 3362 or by using the FEMA App. Help may be available for temporary housing, home repairs and low-interest disaster loans. If you use a relay service, such as video relay (VRS), captioned telephone or other service, give FEMA the number for that service.
Federal, State and Voluntary Actions
- As fire containment efforts continue, FEMA continues to engage in a variety of active response efforts. This includes search and rescue operations, including canine search teams. In addition, four specialists from Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team are deployed to perform assessments on additional mortuary requirements.
- In Maui, FEMA is providing meals, water and shelter supplies to county government for distribution. FEMA is actively shipping commodities to Maui from its warehouse in Oahu. So far, 50,000 meals, 75,000 liters of water, 5,000 cots and 10,000 blankets are ready to distribute. FEMA’s distribution warehouse in Oahu, Hawaii has another 3.8 million meals and more than 3.6 million liters of water available, as well over 50 emergency generators. As commodities make their way out of the distribution center and onto Maui, FEMA is replenishing the warehouse with supplies from the mainland.
- The Maui County Food Bank is reporting the availability of over 31,000 pounds of food for survivors from the Emergency Food Assistance Program.
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service approved Hawaii’s request for impacted Child Nutrition Programs and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits. The USDA is also coordinating pet reunification activities on the ground and is assessing ability to supply food and water to large animals in Lahaina.
- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services approved a public health emergency effective Aug. 8 through Nov. 6, which provides greater flexibility in meeting emergency health needs of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries in Hawaii.
- The American Red Cross and Maui County continue to staff and support six shelters where food, water, hygiene kits and other essential resources are provided to survivors who are unable to return home. Since the fires began, the Red Cross and partners have provided almost 2,900 overnight shelter stays. As of today, approximately 240 Red Cross personnel are responding or actively deploying and around 100 volunteers are participating in a virtual call center to assist with shelter registrations.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration encourages homeowners, renters, businesses and nonprofits to apply for low interest disaster loans. Businesses can apply for up to $2 million for physical damage or economic injury. You can get more information by calling the Honolulu office: 808-541-2990 or visiting Hawaii | U.S. Small Business Administration (sba.gov).
- Local and national Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOADs) is providing emergency assistance to survivors. Those seeking to donate to the recovery efforts, can do so by visiting hawaiistatevoad.org.
- FEMA mission assigned debris management and temporary emergency power to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to help clear up roads and stabilize electric service as well as the EPA for household hazardous waste removal activities that are essential to begin recovery work in the impacted areas.
Safety Tips for Residents & Tourists
- Residents and tourists should closely monitor and follow instructions from local officials. For state and local safety information and updates, visit: hawaii.gov.
- For information on what to do before, during and after a wildfire, visit ready.gov or Listo.gov.
- To learn more about the Hawaii Wildfires response and recovery efforts, visit FEMA.gov.
Register for Assistance
- FEMA encourages Maui County residents to register for assistance. Residents have four ways to register for assistance: In person with FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance staff, online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by calling 1-800-621-3362 or through the FEMA App.
- Assistance will be determined by comparing recorded essential losses and serious needs to the types of assistance available within FEMA programs and services. FEMA assistance is not the same as insurance. Individuals with insurance should also file a claim through their insurance company.
- Impacted businesses should visit sba.gov/disaster for additional resources and more information.