Skip Navigation Links
Front Page
About GNSExpand About GNS
Arts & Culture
CommunitiesExpand Communities
EducationExpand Education
Links Directory
Medicine & Science
Opinion/ForumExpand Opinion/Forum
Public Safety

Jim Guidry Commentaries
State of Texas
Federal Emergency Management Agency
News Release
Thursday, October 06, 2011


AUSTIN, Texas - Texans who experienced property damage or personal loss as a result of the wildfires and called Texas' 2-1-1 line must still register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to apply for federal disaster assistance. Registering with 2-1-1, the Red Cross or other voluntary agencies does not register survivors with FEMA. The phone number to register with FEMA is 1-800-621-3362.

"Many Texans mistakenly believe that calling 2-1-1 registers them for federal assistance," said Federal Coordinating Officer Kevin L. Hannes of FEMA. "We're here to offer assistance to eligible wildfire survivors, and registering with FEMA is the key in helping us to help them."

Homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and nonprofit organizations can register online at, via web-enabled phone at, or by telephone via FEMA's toll-free numbers: 1-800-621-3362 or TTY 1-800-462-7585. Those who use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services can call 1-800-621-3362. Assistants are available by phone from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.

The application process is simple, but key, because FEMA may provide assistance that can address a survivor's specific needs. Here are a few helpful reminders:

  • If you have insurance, contact your agent before registering with FEMA.
  • When you call FEMA, you will need your Social Security number, your current mailing address, the address of the damaged property, a phone number where you can be reached, a brief description of the damages and any insurance information, including the policy number and the name of your agent.
  • Fill out and return your low-interest loan application from the U.S. Small Business Administration, if you receive one. Returning the application does not obligate you to accept the loan, but it is a necessary step to being considered for other forms of disaster assistance.

Disaster assistance may include grants to help pay for temporary housing, emergency home repairs or other serious disaster-related expenses, such as medical and dental expenses or funeral and burial costs, not covered by insurance or other sources.                                                                                           

The counties designated for assistance under the major disaster declaration for wildfires that occurred on or after Aug. 30 are Anderson, Bastrop, Caldwell, Cass, Colorado, Fayette, Gregg, Grimes, Harrison, Henderson, Hill, Houston, Leon, Marion, Montgomery, Rusk, Smith, Travis, Upshur, Walker, Waller and Williamson.

Follow FEMA tweets about the Texas disaster at Other online resources are, and

GNS congratulates PHA

Guidry News Service is headquartered in Midtown Houston.
at 4001 Fannin Street, Suite 4432, Houston, TX. 77004-4077
(409) 763 NEWS(6397)
© 1996, Guidry News Service. Duplication of any part of this website in any manner is prohibited.