Alaska Declares State Disaster for Interior
Posted by feww on November 20, 2013
Four Storm Systems Devastated Western and Interior Alaska
Governor Sean Parnell has declared a state disaster for Interior Alaska. The governor amended his disaster declaration for the western Alaska villages to include the Fairbanks North Star Borough, according to a press release posted on the state website.
“I commend residents for taking care of their neighbors and helping those who were hardest hit by the storm,” he said.
The same storm systems that devastated western Alaska villages went on to cause widespread damage in Interior Alaska. All told, the four storms that moved through the region blew down trees, cutting power to as many as 16,000 residents at the height of the storm.
“All of our state assets have been standing by to assist the borough, and we have maintained communication through the state emergency operations center during the event,” Governor Parnell continued. “The purpose of this disaster declaration is to ensure the borough has access to recovery grants in order to speed up the process.”
Golden Valley Electric Association has coordinated with all available linemen from across the state to repair downed power lines as quickly as possible. Crews have been working around the clock since the storm subsided this weekend.
Parnell made the announcement after meeting with residents in the Northwest Arctic Borough, Bering Straits Regional Education Attendance Area, and Lower Yukon, as well as the mayors of FNSB, North Pole and Fairbanks.
Four major storm systems battered the state earlier this month with powerful winds, strong seas and freezing rain and snow, said a report.
The governor’s office says that the declaration opens access to state disaster relief funds to repair infrastructure and some homes.