ST. LOUIS — It's been two months since 15-inches of rainfall over a 10-day period, caused flash flooding throughout the region.
The flash floods destroyed homes and businesses all across the St. Louis area.
Despite the time that has passed, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials are still on the ground helping people recover.
Starting on Monday, Sept. 19 the agency is offering free repair and rebuilding advice at local stores.
As the task force lead for the FEMA mitigation department, Stanley Ballentine, wants people to be safe before, during and after any kind of devastation.
"We want them to be safe. We want them to prepare themselves," he said.
With the twists and turns the weather can bring, FEMA officials like Ballentine, want to make sure people are ready for the next storm.
"We're trying to reach out to everybody, not just those that was affected, but those that could be affected," he said.
Ballentine is just one of the many, with the federal agency, setting up shop at local Home Depots.
They're providing free information to people about how to make their home safer and stronger.
"Stuff we put on the table here are things that we encourage people to consider to use in their home before, during and after disaster," he said.
That includes everything from flood barriers to sewer valves to cleaning supplies, according to Ballentine.
"We have some things over here that will prevent water of one or two inches from coming into your home," he said.
Aside from hardware, Ballentine said, there's a couple of other tips they're telling people, like advising them to get flood insurance and having their roof checked, at least once a year.
"We don't know if the weather is going to be the same every year," he said. "It could be worse."
While there is a lot of help from the federal and state government, Ballentine said, it's better to be safe than sorry.
"If you can prepare yourself before things happen, that's less of a headache and problem that you have to go through," he said.
FEMA officials are at these three Home Depots through Saturday, Oct. 1, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.:
- 11215 St. Charles Rock Road
- Bridgeton, MO 63044
- 1603 S. Hanley Road
- Brentwood, MO 63144
- 3202 S. Kingshighway Blvd
- St. Louis, MO 63139
The deadline to apply with FEMA is Friday, Oct. 7.
You can apply online here or by calling 800-621-3362.
You can also apply at one of the six Disaster Recovery Centers, that are open across the St. Louis area.
Recovery centers are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.
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