Gov. Wolf requests President Biden declare major disaster in Pennsylvania after storms

Gov. Tom Wolf comes to witness Hurricane Ida damage in PA

Horsham Township Manager William T. Gildea-Walker (red shirt) describes the tornado damage to the town's elementary school to Gov. Tom Wolf, who toured the site on Friday. (Emma Lee/WHYY)

This story originally appeared on 6ABC

Governor Tom Wolf has requested President Joe Biden declare a major disaster in Pennsylvania following last’s week severe storms.

“I am requesting a federal disaster declaration because Pennsylvanians and our communities need and deserve critical support as they recover from significant damages to their homes and public infrastructure,” Gov. Wolf said.

The governor’s request includes a major disaster declaration for Individual Assistance for Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Philadelphia, and York counties; Public Assistance for Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Fulton, Montgomery, Philadelphia, and York counties; and for the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program to be made available to all 67 counties of the Commonwealth.

The collective damage estimate to public infrastructure to date is currently estimated at $117 million.

On Wednesday, Wolf toured Bridgeport, Montgomery County, one of the many areas ravaged by the storm. One resident died in his basement after it was filled with water from the Schuylkill River.

The damage to homes and businesses is extensive. Many are without flood insurance.

Laura Houck, a Bridgeport business owner and resident, told the governor she lost everything.

“Please help us, thank you for coming out,” said Houck.
In Norristown, a line of mostly frustrated residents stood outside the multi-agency resource center, which opened Wednesday at 2 W. Lafayette Street.

Residents can meet with representatives from disaster relief groups, as well as municipal, county, and state emergency management officials, and human services agencies.

“I lost my car, I lost my house, I lost everything and it was just like that. Now, it is like how am I going to get to work? The bills are going to keep coming in,” said Bridgeport resident David Pitts.

Get daily updates from WHYY News!

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal