FEMA authorizes federal funds to help fight Walland fire

WALLAND (WATE)  – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized federal funds to reimburse costs to fight the East Miller Cove Fire burning in Blount County.

This authorization makes FEMA grant funding available to reimburse 75 percent of the eligible firefighting costs for managing, mitigating and controlling the fire. Eligible costs can include labor, equipment and supplies used for firefighting and costs for emergency work such as evacuations and sheltering.

“FEMA approved these funds to make sure that Tennessee has the money to fight this fire and protect lives and property,” said FEMA Regional Administrator Gracia Szczech.

The state requested a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG), and it was granted in the late evening of November 19, 2016. The fire started on November 17, and at the time of the request, had burned more than 800 acres of state and private land and was expected to increase by 300 additional acres. The fire was threatening 200 homes in and around Walland, Tenn. In addition, the fire was threatening an elementary school, a church, a recreational vehicle park, a post office, cell tower and Tennessee Valley Authority powerlines in Townsend, Tenn. At the time of the request, evacuations were taking place for more than 200 homes, and evacuations were expected to continue.

Funds were also authorized to reimburse costs for the fires across Southeastern Kentucky.


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