Governor Matt Bevin yesterday sent a letter to President Donald Trump, requesting a Presidential Disaster Declaration for 35 Kentucky counties that were impacted during a severe weather event beginning on Feb. 21. The weather pattern produced torrential rain that resulted in flooding, landslides and mudslides, along with intense thunderstorms that led to flash flooding and tornadoes.
The weather system caused over $24.7 million in damages statewide, with 75 percent of that total related to highways, bridges and local infrastructure. Four Kentuckians lost their lives during this event, along with many minor injuries.
“This requested Presidential Disaster Declaration will provide more than one-quarter of Kentucky’s counties with federal assistance as they recover from widespread severe storms and flooding in recent weeks,” said Gov. Bevin. “The Commonwealth has already experienced a challenging 2018 weather-wise, with these events coming on the heels of severe flooding across Eastern Kentucky in February. It has been inspiring to see Kentuckians come together to help their neighbors, and our hope is that this Declaration request will yield much-needed assistance for community residents and local governments across the state.”
The following counties are included in this request: Boyd, Bullitt, Butler, Caldwell, Campbell, Carlisle, Carroll, Carter, Christian, Crittenden, Fulton, Gallatin, Grant, Graves, Greenup, Hancock, Hardin, Henderson, Henry, Hickman, Jefferson, Kenton, Lawrence, Livingston, McCracken, McLean, Metcalfe, Ohio, Owen, Spencer, Trigg, Trimble, Union, Washington, and Webster.
“Unfortunately, the Commonwealth has been on the receiving end of two back-to-back major flooding events, only days apart,” said Kentucky Emergency Management (KYEM) director Michael Dossett. “We are hopeful for federal assistance, first for our citizens who suffered flooding damage or displacement from their homes and second for our counties as they continue repairing damages to bridge and roadway infrastructures.”
Since 2009, Kentucky has been granted 19 federally declared disasters as a result of severe weather and flooding events. The Commonwealth is currently awaiting a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) decision on a previous Disaster Declaration request for 22 Eastern Kentucky counties that were impacted during a severe flooding event in mid-February.
For more information on disasters and mitigation processes, please visit www.FEMA.gov.