Van Buren County residents can call for disaster assistance

By Tammy Keith Originally Published April 21, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.
Updated April 19, 2013 at 9:35 a.m.
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Van Buren County Judge Roger Hooper said he isn’t surprised by the positive response of residents following an April 10 tornado.

“People in this area are really resilient, and they tend, when something happens to them, they’re in shock for maybe 24 hours; then they started cleaning up,” he said.

Hooper said 69 homes were hit by the EF2-rated tornado, including six that were “totally destroyed”; 29 that had roof damage or “part of the house wasn’t there”; 14 that will likely have to be torn down; and 20 with shingles or siding missing, or “damage that needs repairs.”

He said areas hit the hardest were the Walnut Grove and Botkinburg communities, as well as Scotland Formosa, Butter Creek and Moors roads, all near Scotland.

Four people received storm-related injuries, and three were treated and released, Hooper said. A fourth person was admitted to a hospital but has since been released.

“That’s a blessing, considering what all occurs in a tornado. It’s amazing that more people aren’t hurt,” Hooper said.

The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management has set up a call center for Van Buren County residents, at (888) 683-2336, through May 1.

Homeowners and renters can call between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday to determine if they are eligible to receive disaster assistance.

An online application is also available until May 1 at www.adem.

Assistance is available for eligible homeowners and renters whose primary residence was either destroyed or made uninhabitable and had uninsured losses during the April 10 tornado. Businesses are not eligible for state assistance, according to a press release from the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management.

Categories of assistance include home repairs, personal-property repairs and replacement, cleaning and sanitizing, debris removal, and repairs and replacement of primary transportation.

Callers or online applicants need to provide homeowner and renter information, a Social Security number, the address of the damage, a telephone number, an email address and insurance information.

For more information, call the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management at (501) 683-6700.

Senior writer Tammy Keith can be reached at (501) 327-0370 or

Niche Publications Senior Writer Tammy Keith can be reached at 501-327-0370 or

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