UPDATE On Middle Tennessee Tornado Destruction

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Photo from the National Weather Service

As of Sunday (3/8/2020) afternoon, the Tennessee Department of Health says that deaths caused by the tornado specifically have remained at 24. Of that number, 18 fatalities were recorded in Putnam County, 3 fatalities in Wilson County 2 fatalities in Davidson County and 1 fatality in Benton County.

Damage surveys conducted by the National Weather Service in Memphis, Nashville, and Morristown have determined 10 tornadoes touched down across the state, with 7 of these tornadoes affecting Middle Tennessee. The two strongest and most damaging tornadoes included an EF-3 tornado that tracked over 60 miles across the Nashville metro area eastward to Smith County, as well as an even stronger EF-4 tornado that caused severe damage in central Putnam County between Baxter and Cookeville, TN. All of these tornadoes were moving extremely fast at speeds around 60-70 mph.

Around 7,000 remained without power in Tennessee on Sunday (3/8/2020).

There are three Disaster Assistance Centers open in Metro Nashville, with planning in place to also open Centers in Wilson and Putnam counties to help disaster survivors with services and the application process for federal assistance.

IMPORTANT WEBSITES and PHONE NUMBERS:

• Those who need help with debris removal can contact the Crisis Cleanup Hotline at 1-800-451-1954.

• Airbnb is providing no-cost accommodations to Tennessee storm and tornado survivors, www.airbnb.com/tornado20.

• Tennessee's Crisis Phone Line is 1-855-274-7471 to speak with a trained mental health professional.

• Volunteer in Davidson County to help survivors with Hands on Nashville, 615-298-1108 or www.hon.org.

• Volunteer to help survivors in other Tennessee counties with TN VOAD, https://tnvoad.shutterfly.org.

• Avoid disaster-related scams with help from the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs, 615-741-4743 or www.tn.gov/consumer.

• Get help on filing insurance claims, hiring contractors, and reporting misconduct with the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, www.tn.gov/commerce. Mobile claims units are located in Nashville and Cookeville.

• Local short-term or permanent rental housing options with the Tennessee Housing Development Agency, www.TNHousingSearch.org or 1-877-428-8844.

• The Tennessee Department of Safety has Driver Services Mobile Units in Cookeville and Nashville to help those who have lost IDs during the storms, http://bit.ly/32PaTuF.

FEDERAL Help and Information:

Impacted individuals in three, federally-declared counties - Wilson, Putnam, and Davidson - can begin now to register with FEMA and apply for federal assistance if eligible. Individuals can begin the registration process by visiting www.disasterassistance.gov, or calling FEMA at 1-800-621-3362 or TTY 1-800-462-758, between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m., ET, 7 days a week.

After registering for disaster assistance, FEMA may refer applicants to U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). In times of disasters, the SBA offers low-interest loans for businesses, homeowners and renters. The SBA will contact businesses, homeowners and renters by telephone in follow up with information about its disaster loan program. There's no obligation to accept an SBA loan, but the SBA has the largest source of federal disaster recovery funds available to survivors who apply.

Joint preliminary damage assessments are forthcoming in Benton, Carroll, and Gibson counties in order to secure possible federal reimbursement assistance to these county governments for debris removal and emergency measures during the severe weather event.

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Murfreesboro, Nashville, Putnam, Tennessee, TN, Tornado
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