23 Apr 2004

FEMA assists Micronesia's Yap state recover from typhoon damage

10:18 am on 23 April 2004

It's estimated more than 5-hundred homes have been severely damaged or destroyed in the Micronesian state of Yap after the devastating Typhoon Sudal.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, which has deployed about 100 people to the region to provide support, says that up to 8-hundred people are still homeless in the wake of the typhoon two weeks ago.

The Public Information officer for FEMA, John Treanor, says the initial declaration of disaster allowed FEMA to begin helping with debris removal and emergency protective measures such as public health, safety and protection.

"The utilities are pretty much back and the power is pretty much back on. So far we've shipped about 20,000 gallons of water and a good amount of food, and tarpaulins and tents... and other types of supplies. So that's what we get involved in for immediate need - the first response. Now we're getting into kind of the recovery phase. They lost about 90 per cent of their agriculture crop."

Mr Treanor says the next step after the damage assessments will be the funding part of the recovery process.

The public assistance that we give, which is for debris removal and emergency measures at the beginning, and roads and bridges and water control facilities, government buildings, and equipment utilities. We fund 75 per cent of the damages to those buildings. And then for those individuals it's on a case-by-case basis. But we're not able to get people back up to where they were before, we just give them a helping hand.