Residents impacted by the Bobcat Fire have until Wednesday to register for financial support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
FEMA gives eligible wildfire survivors financial support to help pay for needs such as rent, home repairs, medical/dental costs, funeral expenses and other disaster-related expenses. Also, FEMA may be able to help with disaster-caused damage that insurance doesn’t cover.
The Bobcat Fire erupted in the Angeles National Forest on Sept. 6, blackening about 116,000 acres, destroying 171 structures, including 87 residences and the Nature Center at the Devil’s Punchbowl Natural Area, and nearly burning down the Mt. Wilson Observatory. It damaged another 47 other structures, including 28 residences, and took weeks to fully contain.
“We strongly encourage anyone who suffered a loss due to the Bobcat Fire to register for assistance from FEMA,” said Kevin McGowan, director of the Los Angeles County Office of Emergency Management.
“During this holiday season, many individuals are feeling a big financial strain. Eligible Bobcat wildfire survivors can use FEMA’s financial support to help pay for needs such as rent, home repairs, medical costs and other disaster-related expenses,” he said. “Every bit of support helps and we want to make sure eligible LA County wildfire survivors get all the support that is available to them.”
To be reimbursed by FEMA, residents should photograph damage and save repair receipts. They also should contact their insurers and file a claim for the disaster-caused damage before they register with FEMA because eligibility is determined once an applicant’s insurance claim is settled.
If residents have insurance but aren’t sure whether they will be eligible for monetary assistance, they should still register with FEMA.
Wildfire survivors can register with FEMA for federal aid in one of three ways:
— online at DisasterAssistance.gov;
— by downloading the FEMA app;
— by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585).
If residents use a relay service such as a videophone, Innocaption or CapTel, they should provide FEMA with the specific number assigned to that service when they register.
When registering for FEMA assistance, residents should be prepared to provide their personal information, including Social Security number, insurance policy information and a description of the damages or losses suffered in the wildfire.
For additional Bobcat wildfire recovery resources, please visit lacounty.gov/recovery or dial 211 for information and resources.