Ivey requests immediate assistance from FEMA

State resources deployed to assist with recovery in Lee County

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Gov. Kay Ivey signed an expedited major declaration request asking President Trump to approve immediate assistance for Lee County. This comes after a tornado struck and caused chaos in east Alabama communities.

Ivey said she had a phone call with President Trump Monday morning, asking him for support in her request for immediate assistance.

“I certainly told him that we had had tragic loss of life,” she said. “And he said ‘of course you’ve got my support.’”

President Trump said Monday afternoon he directed FEMA to help Lee County. He said they are in full-force doing what they can to help.

“And we pledge our unwavering support to help you rebuild from the very depths of this horrible tragedy,” Trump said.

Help has been flooding in since the tornadoes tore through Alabama.

“We are very appreciative of all of the first responders, fire, EMS," said Kathy Carson, the Lee County EMA Director.

Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones said it hurts him to see the people in the community he loves struggling. However, he stands appreciative of those coming to assist.

“We had an overwhelming response from the community and volunteers from literally all over the state," Jones said.

Since the storm hit, the Alabama Emergency Management Agency has had boots on the ground. The state EMA is helping coordinate helicopter search and rescue operations with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.

“We’re just trying to plug in and be compassionately intrusive into their operations and let them know that we’re here to support, identify gaps and capabilities, and make sure that we minimize loss of life in Lee county and the surrounding areas,” said Brian Hastings, the State EMA Director.

Local EMAs including Montgomery and Talladega counties say they are on standby to help with whatever requests Lee County has. All of these efforts are in an effort to rebuild communities experiencing unimaginable losses.

“Y’all we will overcome this loss," Ivey said. “We’ve done it before and we’ll do it again.”

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