FEMA Damage Assessments begin in Florence County

FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW) – President Obama lists Florence County as one of the 13 counties declared as a disaster. This means County and Government buildings can receive some money for repairs from the Federal Government.

People in damaged homes from Hurricane Matthew must wait for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to complete the Damage Assessment.

Wednesday, FEMA representatives, State Emergency Management and Florence Public Works toured the County to examine the damage Hurricane Matthew left behind.

Depending on the Damage Assessment officials decide if the County qualifies for a certain financial amount for individual assistance for residents.

Florence County estimates damages in Florence County over 12 million dollars.

Andrew Golden with the Florence County Emergency Management said, “We are in the process of trying to get that [financial] threshold.”

“Then it will be just like last year’s flooding. We’ll set up a place like we did in Lake City. It’s called the disaster recovery center. Where you will be able to go to apply for Federal Assistance and sit down to speak with somebody. All that process is going to start over like it did last year for the flooding,” Golden adds.

Golden said the process took a few days to access the damages after the floods last year—as soon as we have the information we will pass that along to you.


Florence County Emergency Management officials said the biggest concern right now is getting people in the counties power restored.

Thousands of people are still without power in Florence County.

Florence County Emergency Management said the biggest concern right now is getting people in the counties power restored.


Florence County has the third highest power outage in the state.

Golden said power companies are working around the clock to restore power and asks residents to be patient.


Golden said, “A lot of people are still without power. I know the power companies are working hard to get that power restored as quickly as they can.”

“I know they have already restored a lot of power throughout the county they are going to continue to work hard until they get everybody back up. I think right now power being out is the one thing that we’re waiting for.  For a lot of people to feel like they are returning back to normal everyday life. Once we get that back I think we can move towards that.”

The Florence County Emergency Operations Center has not had a chance to compare damages of the October flood from last year to Hurricane Matthew because they are still trying to access damages and get power for many parts of the County.