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December 2, 2016

TEMA Update on Sevier County Wildfire & Tennessee Tornadoes, 12/2/16, 1 p.m., Central


HIGHLIGHTS

• Gatlinburg officials are allowing residents, business owners, and property owners into the city today, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Eastern, to check on the status of their structures.

• The Tennessee Department of Health has confirmed (13) wildfire fatalities in Sevier County.

• The Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) has confirmed four (4) weather-related fatalities: two (2) fatalities in Polk County, and two (2) fatalities in Meigs County.


DONATIONS, VOLUNTEERS & RESOURCES

• Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam’s Office and numerous State Departments and Agencies have collaborated to publish a resource webpage for Sevier County residents, businesses, and for those who want to help the wildfire survivors.

• The Sevier County resource page is located at http://www.tn.gov/governor/news/sevier-county-resource-page, and includes topic information on donations, employment assistance, hiring contractors, health matters, housing assistance, insurance help, and letting loved ones know you are safe. Topics and information will continue to be added and TEMA will continue to publish our Flash Report updates, too.

• Those who would like to volunteer to help for Sevier County, should sign up with Volunteer East Tennessee https://www.volunteeretn.org/DisasterRecovery. You will be contacted as soon as Sevier County has volunteer operations up-and-running. Please do not show up in Sevier County to volunteer, or deliver donations.

• The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and Tennessee Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (TN VOAD) have setup a call center, 866-586-4483, staffed from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., every day, for information about donating goods and volunteering to help survivors of the Sevier County wildfires.


TORNADO OUTBREAK


CURRENT SITUATION
Damage assessments and debris clearance still ongoing. Storm-impacted counties, including: Bradley, Coffee, Marion, Meigs, McMinn, Polk, and Sequatchie.


As crews work to restore electricity to customers from the storms, power outages stand at 423 as of this afternoon across multiple counties.


The National Weather Services (NWS) confirms five (5) tornadoes impacted Tennessee Nov. 29: Coffee County, two (2) EF1s (105 mph); Marion County, one (1) EF2 (125 mph); McMinn County, one (1) EF2 (135 mph); Polk County, one (1) EF3 (140 mph).


FATALITIES & INJURIES
TDH has confirmed four (4) weather-related fatalities: two (2) fatalities in Polk County, and two (2) fatalities in Meigs County. The severe weather also caused (12) injuries: (11) in McMinn County and (1) in Hamilton County.


There are no firm numbers on exact damage overall at this time.


TEMA continues to support the storm cleanup and coordination, along with the Tennessee Department of Military, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Tennessee State Parks, and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.


The American Red Cross has one (1) shelters open with one (1) occupant at Keith Memorial UMC.


SEVIER COUNTY WILDFIRES


CURRENT SITUATION
Gatlinburg officials are allowing residents, business owners, and property owners into the city today, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Eastern, to check on the status of their structures.


Please visit the Sevier County resource page at http://www.tn.gov/governor/news/sevier-county-resource-page for information on assistance the State of Tennessee and many non-governmental organizations are providing to residents and business, and to those who want to help the wildfire survivors.


In Sevier County, 4,871 people remain without power.


FATALITIES & INJURIES
The Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) has confirmed (13) fatalities in Sevier County from the wildfires. Sevier County officials may be investigating or reporting fatalities in the local jurisdiction not included in the total from TDH in this report. There is no further information available on these fatalities at this time. TDH also reports up to 45 injuries from the Sevier County wildfires.


SHELTERS
There are two Red Cross shelters remain open in Sevier County with 195 total occupants:
• Pigeon Forge Community Center (9)
• Rocky Top Sports World (186)


TELL LOVED ONES YOU ARE SAFE
Sevier County residents can indicate their status with the American Red Cross at the organizations Safe and Well website: https://safeandwell.communityos.org/cms/index.php.


Residents can also use Facebook’s Safety Check to indicate their status: https://www.facebook.com/about/safetycheck/.

About the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency: TEMA’s mission is to coordinate preparedness, response and recovery from man-made, natural and technological hazards in a professional and efficient manner in concert with our stakeholders. Follow TEMA on Facebook, TNDisasterInfo, on Twitter, @T_E_M_A, and at www.tnema.org.