Tennessee looking for federal disaster relief for nine counties

The nine counties suffered after this weekend's tornadoes.
Kingston Springs damage
Posted at 12:01 PM, Dec 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-13 13:43:59-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee is requesting federal emergency assistance Monday for nine counties impacted in the tornado outbreak this weekend.

Ultimately, the tornadic event left four people in the state dead. Tennessee experienced two lines of severe weather beginning Friday evening and into Saturday morning as a mass of warm, unstable air moved across the state. The storms produced at least nine tornadoes across West and Middle Tennessee and left more than 150,000 people without power at the severe weather’s peak.

"Our emergency officials, first responders, and law enforcement brought hope where there was none in the aftermath of these storms," Gov. Lee said. "Our effort now will be to bring as much relief as possible to these devastated communities."

Lee is asking President Joe Biden for an emergency declaration to make federal assistance available to Cheatham, Decatur, Dickson, Dyer, Gibson, Lake, Obion, Stewart, and Weakley counties for debris removal and emergency protective measures.

If the emergency declaration is granted, the Federal Emergency Management Agency will reimburse jurisdictions for eligible work or provide direct operational assistance.

Gov. Lee indicates Tennessee will seek a Major Disaster Declaration for qualifying jurisdictions after local officials are able to complete a thorough assessment of storm damage to make FEMA’s Public Assistance and Individual Assistance programs available to the declared counties that qualify for federal help.

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency has made a recovery website available in an effort to help storm survivors find resources and support.