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Local 5 - weareiowa.com | Des Moines Local News & Weather | Des Moines, Iowa

FEMA drive-thru Disaster Recovery Center opening in Ames Tuesday

Seven weeks after the derecho tore through Iowa, Story County residents will be able to submit documents for disaster assistance via drive-thru service.

AMES, Iowa — Editor's Note: The video above is from Sept. 9, 2020. 

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will open a Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) Tuesday for Story County residents to submit documents for their disaster assistance applications seven weeks after the derecho ripped through the state.

The DRC will open at noon at the North River Valley Park. It will close permanently on Saturday, October 10 at 6 p.m. It'll be open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Survivors from the derecho will be able to ask questions and submit documents for disaster assistance through the DRC's drive-thru service. Applicants are asked to wear face masks and stay in their vehicles while at the center. 

Applicants can register in the following ways: 

  • Go online to DisasterAssistance.gov.
  • Download the FEMA Mobile App for smartphones.
  • Call 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585) between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. Central Time, seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available.

Those submitting applications don't need to do it in person. Instead, survivors can submit them:

  • By mailing them to FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program, National Processing Service Center, P.O. Box 10055, Hyattsville MD 20782-7055
  • Or faxing them to 800-827-8112
  • Or online by clicking/tapping this link

More information can be found in their FEMA letter, according to the agency. 

Survivors that have already registered with FEMA and have been asked to provide more documentation should read over their letter carefully and make sure they have everything they need before heading to the DRC. 

If an applicant doesn't understand their letter, they're advised to call the numbers listed above.