LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved the state’s request to speed up the process of receiving federal assistance following the deadly Gaylord tornado.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Tuesday that FEMA granted a request for a joint preliminary damage assessment with state and local officials fast track the assessment of the damage caused by Friday afternoon’s EF3 tornado.

The joint teams will include personnel from FEMA, state police, local governments and U.S. Small Business Administration. They are expected to start gathering information Wednesday, according to a news release from the governor’s office.

The preliminary damage assessment is the next step the state must complete in the process of asking for federal assistance.


The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services said residents affected by the tornado might be eligible for replacement food assistance or State Emergency relief.

If you received food assistance and had food spoiled due to a power outage or lost food due to storm damage, MDHHS said you might be eligible to get it replaced. Those who purchased food with food assistance benefits have 10 days after the date of the storm or the power outage to file a replacement request with their caseworker.

Eligible low-income residents whose homes were damaged by the tornado can receive state assistance with home repairs. More information can be found on the state’s website or contact a local MDHHS office.