Gov. Hutchinson says over 300 Arkansas homes damaged by tornadoes

By Sarah Horbacewicz

In Tuesday's report, Governor Hutchinson stood alongside the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management (ADEM) to report the estimated damages from Friday night's storms.

The governor shared that 307 homes were damaged and 61 of them destroyed.

"It's certainly a devastated area in terms of property loss, as well as to losses of life," Gov. Hutchinson said.

But the ADEM added that those initial reports represent residential damage and do not include businesses or agricultural losses.

Gov. Hutchinson did add in his report that cotton and rice farms were damaged as well.

Officials emphasized that this data is essential in moving forward with recovery.

"Right now, the best thing we can do for the individuals is get this data collected as quickly as possible so that we can get these other programs turned on," AJ Gary, the Director of the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management, added.

Wednesday, FEMA is expected to visit the five Arkansas counties that reported storm damage to assess the destruction themselves. And while this is a step toward recovery, federal funded relief could be months away, if Arkansas's total storm loss qualifies for disaster declaration.

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