President Declares Disaster for April Storm

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COLUMBIA, S.C. - At the request of Governor Henry McMaster, President Donald Trump has declared a disaster exists in South Carolina as a result of severe storms and tornadoes on April 12-13, 2020. Residents who suffered storm damage in the following seven counties may now register for disaster assistance through FEMA: Aiken, Colleton, Hampton, Marlboro, Oconee, Orangeburg and Pickens counties. 

FEMA Individual Assistance can help residents with eligible storm-related costs not covered by insurance. Please note that prior to receiving Federal financial assistance, any insurance benefits must be exhausted to avoid duplication of benefits.

Residents can register for FEMA assistance in one of three ways: 

  • Online by logging onto
  • Online by downloading the FEMA app, available for Apple and Android mobile devices. To download the app, visit: or your phone’s app store.
  • Call 800-621-3362. Residents who are Deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. Language translators also are available.
  • Toll-free numbers are open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Additionally, President Trump approved Federal aid to supplement state and local agency recovery efforts in the following eight counties: Barnwell, Colleton, Georgetown, Hampton, Oconee, Orangeburg and Pickens counties.

Under the FEMA Public Assistance Program, state agencies, affected local governments and certain private non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for federal funding to pay 75 percent of the approved costs under certain categories such as emergency measures, debris removal and road repair related to the storm.

The division of the remaining 25 percent will be determined later. More information about this program can be found here.

The declaration also makes cost-shared funding available to the state for approved projects that reduce - or mitigate - future disaster risks. Funds under this program will be available to state agencies, local governments, and certain non-profit organizations only. A wide variety of potential projects are eligible.

Representatives from the SCEMD Recovery Section will explain procedures for requesting assistance at a series of applicant briefings at locations to be announced soon in the affected areas.