A state emergency management officials says they’ll begin the process next week to see if the counties hit Monday by the heavy wind storm could qualify for federal disaster help. Joyce Flinn says they first need to get a tally on the damage.
Flinn says they are requesting assessments of damage to infrastructure in Benton, Marshall, Tama and Story County. The assessments will begin Monday and includes damage roads, bridges, critical infrastructure, and utilities. The National Weather Service says the storm called a derecho began around 3:20 Monday morning just north of Des Moines around hit 130-miles-an hour as it topped out around Vinton and Garrison.
The storm ripped off roofs and broke off utility poles and Flinn says they’ll be calculating an estimated cost. She says if there is enough damage to meet the criteria for a federal designation, they would then request one. Flinn says there are a couple of different standards that have to be met.
Flinn says the first thing they have to meet is an approximately three-point-nine million dollar damage assessment for the whole area, and then each county must a per capita assessment — one based on the number of people in the county — to be included in the federal declaration.
While the winds damaged many buildings and electric poles, it also laid flat many acres of corn. Flinn says crop damage is not part of this assessment. She says this does not include crops, but they are aware of the impact and at some point will ask the farm service agency to collect crop damage assessments for them. Flinn says the crop disaster declaration would be separate and would come from the U.S.D.A.
The governor has declared Benton and Tama state disaster declarations. Flinn says information has also been submitted requesting a state declaration for Marshall County.