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FEMA mobile claims center up and running in Bowling Green

Dalton York

A top Federal Emergency Management Agency official toured tornado damage in Bowling Green Thursday as a mobile registration intake center opened in the city. Residents impacted by the storms can speak to FEMA representatives at the mobile center about what government assistance is available under an emergency declaration signed by President Biden.

Anne Bink, associate administrator for response and recovery for FEMA, said she understands many residents affected by the weekend tornadoes are under tremendous stress and might feel overwhelmed.

“I know Bowling Green is hurting right now and I know there’s a lot of unanswered questions and uncertainty in terms of being able to move forward. And just not fully being able to grasp the magnitude of the damage and the long-term impacts that it’s going to have on the community and the commonwealth.”

Bink praised volunteers and first responders for helping people to rebuild and move forward.  

“This is a layered approach,” she said. “Right now, we’re concerned about the loss of life and our grieving families and the human element of this—literally wrapping our arms around people who need us right now. You have all of your logistical experts that are here helping us to figure out what those next steps are going to be, in terms of how we’re going to clean up and how to recover and rebuild.”

FEMA’s mobile claims center in Bowling Green is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily until further notice. FEMA officials say the location of the center could change.

Bowling Green Mayor Todd Alcott said previously this week that FEMA representatives have inspected a wing of the Bowling Green Mall that they're planning to use as a longer-term "one-stop shop" claims center for residents wanting to seek government support. 

The current deadline to apply for FEMA assistance is February 11. Claims can be filed online here

Former student intern Alana Watson rejoined WKU Public Radio in August 2020 as the Ohio Valley ReSource economics reporter. She transitioned to the station's All Things Considered Host in July of 2020. Watson is a 2017 graduate of Western Kentucky University and has a B.A. in Broadcasting Journalism. She also has her M.A in Communications from Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, TN. Watson is a Nashville native and has interned at WPLN-FM in Nashville. In 2019, she won a Tennessee AP Broadcaster & Editors Award for her sports feature on Belmont University's smallest point guard. While at WKU Public Radio she won Best College Radio Reporter in 2016 from the Kentucky Ap Broadcasters Association for her work on post-apartheid South Africa. Watson was previously at Wisconsin Public Radio as thier 2nd Century Fellow where she did general assignment and feature reporting in Milwaukee.
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