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For First Time, Disaster Survivors Can Apply For Federal Disaster Aid On Smartphones

New feature on m.fema.gov makes applying for assistance easier than ever

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced a new feature to the m.fema.gov mobile platform to make it easier for disaster survivors to apply for federal aid from FEMA, and other federal agencies, after Presidential declared disasters. Now, in addition to being able to access critical information about emergency preparedness and what to do before and after a disaster on their smartphones, disaster survivors will also be able to apply for federal assistance directly through their web enabled mobile phone devices (such BlackBerry®, Apple iPhone®, and Windows Mobile® device).  By visiting m.fema.gov, individuals can quickly access our partner site, disasterassistance.gov to apply for federal assistance.  For claims regarding the BP oil spill, individuals should continue to visit www.bp.com/claims.

"This new addition to our FEMA mobile site will provide disaster survivors with another avenue to quickly apply for assistance, not just from FEMA, but from the Small Business Administration and our other federal partners," said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate.  "As smartphones become cheaper and more prevalent, and wireless networks more resilient, these devices are becoming more than just simple communication tools - they can be life lines during emergencies.  This new addition to m.fema.gov is just another way we are expanding the tools we use to communicate with the most important member of our emergency management team - the public."

Registration through the mobile site takes just three easy steps:
  1. Go to m.fema.gov and click "Apply Online for FEMA Assistance".  You will be directed to our partner site disasterassistance.gov.
  2. Click on "Start Registration".
  3. Fill out the registration form to apply for assistance.
Watch a video of Administrator Fugate www.youtube.com/fema demonstrating the new feature.

FEMA first launched the mobile version of its website, m.fema.gov, in May to give smartphone users easy access to information quickly and succinctly.  This new feature takes the site a step further in allowing people to register for assistance right on their phones.  FEMA plans to continue making enhancements to the m.fema.gov platform over the next months, such as providing individuals the ability to check on their application status or update an existing application, among other things. Learn more about how FEMA is using technology in innovative ways here (www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=52167).

FEMA's disaster assistance programs are designed to help meet essential needs and assist individuals and their households in taking the first steps toward recovery, but are not intended to return all homes or belongings to their pre‐disaster condition.  FEMA's individual assistance is only available after a Presidential declared disaster that includes individual assistance.  Survivors can also apply by calling 1-800-621-FEMA or logging on to www.fema.gov

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Follow FEMA online at www.twitter.com/fema, www.facebook.com/fema, and www.youtube.com/fema.  The social media links provided are for reference only.  FEMA does not endorse any non-government Web sites, companies or applications.

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