Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management
Situation Update 5
May 22, 2013 6 p.m.
SEVERE WEATHER IMPACTS STATE
Due to widespread tornado damage, the State Emergency Operations Center remains activated at reduced levels. The EOC will close at midnight Wednesday and will resume normal operations at 8 a.m. Thursday.
The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) is in contact with emergency managers across the state and coordinating with the Oklahoma National Guard, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Department of Human Services, Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security, Oklahoma Department of Transportation, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, Office of Management and Enterprise Services, Oklahoma Insurance Department, Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Service, National Weather Service, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Medical Reserve Corps, American Red Cross, the Salvation Army and the Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD).
The State has launched a website, okstrong.ok.gov, to provide up-to-date information and resources. Individuals affected by the storm are urged to report their whereabouts on the American Red Cross website, safeandwell.org.
Search, rescue and recovery efforts are nearly complete, but are still ongoing.
Preliminary debris removal planning is underway. The City of Moore will lead debris removal efforts. Numerous agencies stand ready to assist the City of Moore in there efforts. The Federal Emergency Management Agency will pay 85 percent of debris removal costs for the first 30 days. FEMA will pay smaller percentages of debris removal costs after 30 days.
The Oklahoma National Guard remains activated, with 117 members deployed in 46 vehicles throughout the area. The Guard is also assisting with providing drinking water to the area.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol reports 43 troopers and 23 additional state law enforcement personnel staffing 23 perimeter checkpoints.
Moore officials report they have enough responders on scene at this time, and ask that additional resources and volunteers please stay away from the affected area unless specifically requested.
Responding agencies and organizations are continuing to organize resources to feed up to 40,000 people over the coming days.
The Oklahoma Office of the Chief Medical Examiner reports 24 fatalities related to Monday’s storms.
Two fatalities are attributed to Sunday’s storms.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) reports 324 injuries as a result of Monday’s storms. The injuries include 168 individuals who sustained cuts or pierces and 114 individuals who were struck by objects.
Due to low water pressure Tuesday, Oklahoma Heart Hospital South relocated 14 patients.
The Oklahoma City-County Health Department is offering tetanus shots to rescue workers, volunteers and residents in affected areas.
The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (ODMHSAS) has established an emergency response center within the tornado disaster zone in Moore at the Cleveland County Health Department, 424 S Eastern Ave. in Moore. ODMHSAS is also coordinating volunteer efforts and providing mandatory training for behavioral health professionals wishing to assist with services for those in need. Licensed mental health professionals, certified case managers or certified recovery support specialists who would like to assist victims should call (405) 522-3908. To be admitted into the disaster zone, volunteers must have received training and hold a valid identification badge. Badges will be issued by the ODMHSAS at the completion of training.
ODMHSAS is also offering services through the Disaster Distress Helpline, 1 (800) 985-5990. The helpline can provide immediate counseling to anyone who needs help dealing emotionally with the aftermath of the storms.
Individuals who want to volunteer to help with disaster relief should register on the Oklahoma Medical Reserve Corps (OKMRC) website at www.okmrc.org. OKMRC is designed to bring together different healthcare-related organizations and members of the community, including physicians, nurses, public health workers, and other medical professionals. In addition, volunteers without a background in medical training are needed.
Northbound and southbound lanes of I-35 through Moore have been reopened. However, emergency and cleanup crews are requesting motorists to avoid I-35 in Moore. Heavy traffic in the area is greatly hindering cleanup operations and ongoing emergency response. All I-35 off-ramps in Moore remain closed to the public.
FEMA is assisting OEM and other agencies in the process of assessing damage to structures. The assessment is ongoing due to the wide scope of damage sustained in the affected area. FEMA officials are also assessing the need for temporary housing for affected individuals.
Oklahoma Insurance Department officials estimate up to $2 billion in damage may have occurred in the affected areas.
President Barack Obama has issued a major disaster declaration for Cleveland, Lincoln, McClain, Oklahoma and Pottawatomie counties. The declaration makes individual assistance available to tornado survivors in those counties. All affected individuals, regardless of income level or insurance policy status, are encouraged to apply for individual assistance.
Homeowners, renters and business owners in those counties are encouraged to register with FEMA for potential recovery assistance. Survivors can register online at disasterassistance.gov, via smartphone at m.fema.gov, or by calling 1-800-621-3362.The same counties were also approved for public assistance to include debris removal, emergency protective measures and direct federal assistance.
U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will provide support to homeowners and low-income renters forced from their homes due to the storms. The President’s declaration allows HUD to offer certain foreclosure relief and other assistance to certain families living in the five disaster counties. Individuals who were receiving HUD rental assistance before the disaster should contact their Public Housing Authority, multi-family apartment manager or local HUD office for help in locating temporary housing.
Classes at Moore Public Schools have been canceled for the remainder of the school year. Graduations will continue as planned.
Wireless telecommunications providers are taking steps to boost wireless communications capabilities in the area.
Cox Communications has established a telecommunication center for residents and rescue workers to use. The center has free open WiFi, local and long distance calling and HD video service. Cox is also opening up Cox TV Connect access for those impacted so they can have video viewing capabilities outside of the home.
The telecommunication center is located at the Moore Community Center at 301 N. Broadway in Moore. An additional center will be opened later this evening.
Investigators with the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office are investigating instances of price gouging and ask that anyone who experiences price gouging to contact the AG's Office immediately on the fraud hotline at (405) 521-2029. The practice is illegal. Also, the first scams typically seen following such tragic situations are charity fraud. Please stay alert and only donate to reputable charities.
Recipients of SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program commonly known as "food stamps") whose households were impacted by the storms and have lost their food benefit cards should contact their county Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) worker and request a lost food replacement. Persons needing food assistance can apply for SNAP at their local county OKDHS office.
SHELTERS AND MASS CARE
An estimated 350 individuals are in American Red Cross shelters. The American Red Cross has opened the following shelters:
- St. Andrew's United Methodist Church - 2727 SW 119, Oklahoma City
- Moore Community Center - 201 S Howard, Moore
**First Baptist Church of Moore - 301 NE 27th St., Moore
The American Red Cross encourages the use of their website, www.safeandwell.org, which is designed to help family and friends reunite.
Additionally, the following American Red Cross shelters from Sunday remain open:
- Shawnee High School Athletic Center - 1001 N Kennedy, Shawnee
The University of Oklahoma Housing & Food Services is open for those displaced by the tornadoes. For more information, please call 405-325-2511.
Feed The Children will be accepting donations of diapers, canned goods, non-perishable food and snack items, water and sports drinks, and cash donations at the following locations in Oklahoma City:
- McCormick Warehouse at 29 N McCormick from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- First Baptist Church at 1201 N Robinson
- KOCO at 1300 W Britton Road
- Faith Tabernacle Church at I-40 and Portland
- TLC Garden Center 105 W Memorial
The Salvation Army has seven canteens deployed to the Moore area. One canteen is being sent to Newcastle. Two canteens remain in Shawnee. The Salvation Army is coordinating with Southern Baptist Disaster Relief for meal preparation for The Salvation Army and American Red Cross to then distribute.
Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports approximately 17,760 outages related to the storm.
Total – 35
Tulsa - 23
McAlester area - 6
Chickasha area - 6
OKC North: 821
OKC South: 116
OKC Metro total: 15, 587
Caddo Electric Cooperative
Caddo County, Cement area
Canadian Valley Electric Cooperative
Total - 113
Largest outage - McLoud, Bethel Acres areas
Central Rural Electric
Lincoln County – 215
Logan County - 1
Oklahoma County - 5
Most outages: Carney, Wellston areas
Oklahoma Electric Cooperative
Most in Moore, SE OKC
Total - 60
Southeast Oklahoma Electric
Approximately 70 – Durant area
Found animals are being taken to the following sites:
- Oklahoma City Animal Shelter, SE 29th and Bryant
- Moore Animal Shelter, 3900 S Interstate 35 Service Road
- City of Norman Animal Shelter, 615 E Robinson
- Animal Resource Center, 7949 S Interstate 35 Service Road, Oklahoma City
Pet owners searching for lost pets are encouraged to check okclostpets.com and the Facebook page for the McClain County Animal Response Team.
For Oklahoma residents seeking non-emergency disaster or health and human service information, please contact your local 2-1-1. Services are available 24 hours a day by dialing 2-1-1 from your home or cellular telephone. Please only call 911 for emergencies.