Sep 14, 2016 | By: Brenda Mak

Beltrami, Clearwater Counties Seek State Aid For Wind Damage

Staff from Department of Public Safety Homeland Security and Emergency Management division (DPS-HSEM) will visit Beltrami and Clearwater counties over the next two days to assess wind storm damages that occurred during July 19 through 21. Two tribal governments have also joined the counties to request funding through the State Disaster Assistance Program.

Local emergency managers reported the following estimates in their Initial Damage Assessments:

  • $289,761 in Beltrami County including the Leech Lake Reservation.
  • $289,137 in Clearwater County including the White Earth Reservation.

These estimates account for damage to public infrastructure and are subject to change following field assessments.

The damages do not meet federal requirements for FEMA’s Public Assistance Program, but they could qualify for reimbursement through the Minnesota State Disaster Assistance Program.

Beltrami County experienced three straight days of thunderstorms that began on July 19. The area, including the Leech Lake Reservation, saw heavy winds, hail and lightning strikes. Damages included thousands of fallen trees, downed power lines and roofs blown off of buildings on private property. That debris resulted in blocked roads and widespread power outages.

A severe wind storm caused a broad path of damage throughout Clearwater County, including the White Earth Reservation on July 21. In addition to downed trees, snapped power lines and roof damage, the public safety radio system required repairs in order to return to normal operations.

HSEM staff have conducted Preliminary Damage Assessments for the following counties who are requesting State Disaster Assistance:

  • July 19 – 21 storms: Aitkin, Carlton, Cass, Crow Wing, Lake, St. Louis, Fond du Lac Reservation.
  • August 1 – 4 storms: Cass, Crow Wing.

Governor Dayton has approved State Disaster Assistance for the following locations in 2016:

  • June 14 – 18 storms: Blue Earth and Nicollet counties.
  • July 5 storm: Itasca County & the Leech Lake Reservation.
  • July 9 – 11 storms: Aitkin, Benton, Carlton, Crow Wing, Meeker, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Kanabec, Pine and Traverse counties.
  • July 16 storm: Chippewa, Yellow Medicine counties & the Upper Sioux Community.

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