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Weather-Related Information, Tips, and Links

The Greater Memphis Chamber has been coordinating with officials regarding the flooding in Shelby County to help provide them with data on how many businesses have been affected by the flooding.

If your business has been affected, please contact us at with your name, business name, contact information and the extent of damage.

To help you recover your business, we have provided a list of member companies who can help repair, re-construct or clean up your business after the flooding. Click here for those businesses.

In addition the Chamber has been working closely with the Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Center City Commission, the City of Memphis and Shelby County to promote a unified Memphis message to both the local and national media.

To stay updated on the EMA’s press releases, visit
We will continue to post updates here in our Newsroom.

Updated: Monday, June 20, 2011 - 9:30 a.m.

Update on federal funding for weather-related relief
The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved more than $1 million in disaster assistance loans for residents and businesses in West Tennessee affected by the severe weather from April 19-June 7, 2011.

The SBA is concerned that a percentage of businesses have not turned in their applications for assistance. The deadline for physical damage application loans has been extended to August 9th. The economic injury disaster loan application deadline remains February of 2012. Economic injury is defined broadly and covers situations such as wasted food if power went out due to storms in that time period, loss of customer traffic due to weather-related issues, etc. For more examples, visit

The director of SBA Field Operations Center East in Atlanta, Frank Skaggs said in a written statement, “I encourage anyone who has not completed their disaster loan application to do so as soon as possible.”

Approved loans can be increased for protective measures to lessen similar future damages. Additionally, small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations can obtain loans for unmet working capital needs.

Information about disaster loans and application forms can be obtained by calling the SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for people with speech or hearing disabilities) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EDT or by sending an email to
Applications can also be downloaded from Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

Important MLGW numbers for customers:
• Outage Reporting 544-6500
• Emergency 528-4465
• Customer Care Center 544-MLGW (6549)

Please find below flood safety information as provided by the Shelby County Office of Preparedness (EMA), MLGW and other local, state, and federal agencies.

List of Chamber Members
offering special assistance to flood victims
( PDF - 38kb)

Click here for the latest Severe Weather Alerts from the National Weather Service

• Now that Shelby County has officially been declared a disaster zone according to the EMA, FEMA has opened a Disaster Recovery Center in east Memphis to serve flood survivors. The center is located inside the Shelby County Code Enforcement office at 6465 Mullins Station Road. FEMA staff will be there seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

• To prepare for their visit, it is recommended that you obtain a copy of your insurance policy and understand exactly what is covered. It is also recommended that you keep track of all your expenses due to flood damage and photograph the extent of the damage.

• If possible, flood survivors should register for benefits before going to the Disaster Recovery Center. To register for FEMA assistance call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or by internet at

For a complete update, go to the website

FEMA Links To Disaster Declaration and Assistance

On the evening of May 9, President Obama made federal disaster assistance available to individuals in Dyer, Lake, Obion, Shelby, and Stewart counties in Tennessee. Additional counties may be designated for assistance, as damage surveys continue in the affected area. For the latest, visit

Read the FEMA 3 Step Guide and apply online or call (800) 621-3362 TTY (800) 462-7585. Find a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under this major disaster declaration issued for Tennessee.

To receive assistance from FEMA, you must first register with FEMA. There are four ways to register:

1. By phone, call the FEMA Helpline 800-621-FEMA (3362) from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., CDT. Operators are multilingual. For the speech- or hearing-impaired, the number is TTY 800-462-7585.
2. By computer, go online to
3. By Smartphone or tablet, go to
4. By visiting a FEMA Disaster Recovery Center.

Go to full FEMA Registration page.

Read the full Shelby County EOC update.

• The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has now opened a Disaster Recovery Center in east Memphis to serve flood survivors. The center is located inside the Shelby County Code Enforcement office at 6465 Mullins Station Road. FEMA staff will be there seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

• If possible, flood survivors should register for benefits before going to the Disaster Recovery Center. To register for FEMA assistance call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or by internet at

• So far, 1514 people from Shelby County have applied for disaster assistance from FEMA

• The shelter assistance center has been relocated from the Raleigh Springs Mall to the Code Enforcement office on Mullins Station Road. Having the shelter assistance center and FEMA’s Disaster Assistance Center at the same site will make it more convenient for flood survivors to receive assistance

• The flood recovery task force is continuing to assess damage to homes, businesses and other properties. At least 700 mobile homes were damaged by the flood waters. A more complete assessment will be made once the water recedes. The task force will also check roads and bridge supports submerged by water. Roads won’t be reopened to traffic until they are deemed safe for travel. For a complete listing of closed roads go to the website

• As water recedes, flood gates will be removed. Memphis Public Works crews will first take down gates that block access to railroads and major thoroughfares

Read the full EOC update.


All monetary donations can be sent to:
United Way Disaster Recovery Fund
Attention: Loretta Hurt
6775 Lenox Center Court, Suite 200
Memphis, TN 38115
Call (901) 433-4335 with any questions.

• Volunteer opportunities are available.
• Call the Flood Watch Hotline (901) 324-8799. Text requests to: (901) 290-7530 or send messages by email
• The Shelby County Office of Preparedness has a partnership with several churches in the area. They will join in the shelter effort when needed. Volunteers are needed to work at the shelters. Call (901) 324-8799 to schedule a training session.


Tennessee Disaster Survivors:
Get The Facts About Disaster Assistance

It’s important to be aware of what preparations you should take for your business in the event of flood damage. Below are steps you can take to prepare your business and the process for recovery.

Visit: for:
- Reviewing & Understanding your insurance coverage
- Utility disruptions
- Securing building and maintenance
- Equipment, Air and Cyber Security

Visit: for:
- Flood insurance Rate Maps
- Protecting property from Floods
- Recovery information

Visit: for:
- Requirements to apply for federal assistance
- What is covered under federal disaster assistance

Visit: for:
- Requirements to apply for disaster business loans
- Types of business disaster loans


The most up-to-date computer generated “Impact Statement Maps” are being produced showing areas that are at greatest risk of being affected by flooding. Updates will be issued daily until the flooding crisis is over: Area projected to be impacted by potential flooding.

Updated flood maps of affected areas can be seen at :

Those without internet service can get information by phone at the 24-Hour Flood Watch Hotline (901) 324-8799. Text requests to: (901) 290-7530. The Memphis Public Libraries also offer internet service to visitors.

Remember to check local traffic reports before your work commute each morning in the event you need to take an alternate route to work. Please do not drive close to flooded areas out of curiosity. There were traffic problems reported near the Pyramid today due to people driving too close to the flooded areas. Remember to use extreme caution when driving through standing water in roadways. The depth can be misleading and there have already been multiple incidents in the Mid-South of cars getting swept away by flood waters.

Find updates, emergency information, and shelter openings at the Shelby County Office Of Preparedness.


Click here to see the latest road closures.

Channel 5 has been updating its site with a list of lane closures:

Click here to view the Tennessee Department of Transportation's live traffic map including weather-related closings.


Cummings Street Church, 250 East Raines Rd, Memphis, TN 38109 - 140 Residents
Faith Baptist Church, 3755 N. Germantown Rd., Bartlett, TN 38133 - 10 Residents
Hope Church, 8500 Walnut Grove Rd, Cordova, TN - 178 Residents
Millington Civic Center, 8077 Wilkinsville Road, Millington, TN 38053 - 51 Residents
Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, 70 North Bellevue, Memphis, TN 38128 - 124 Residents


• Emergency animal shelter at 1716 Shelby Oaks Drive, North, Suite #1
Shelters will not allow pets.
• If a pet owner needs sheltering for their pet(s) they need to bring with them and their pet to the shelter the following items if possible – Shot records or rabies tag, a collar and leash and any medication that their animal needs. If the owner does not have these items that is fine as the shelter is able to provide these and will be vaccinating their pet at no charge if needed.
• Pet owners will need to provide the shelter with contact information and present some form of identification (Drivers license, state id etc.).
• Representatives from the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) are caring for the animals. The site is also being used as a regional distribution center for Pet Smart Charities. Food, kennels, other pet supplies are being sent from the site to other states affected by recent tornadoes, storms and floods.

• Langston Companies (901) 409-4738
• United Bags (800) 550-2247
• Associated Bag Company (800) 926-6100 or (800) 376-8415

Officials with the Shelby County Health Department say people should not come into contact with flood waters. Sewage and other contaminates can make people seriously ill, especially if cuts and open wounds become infected.

Representatives from many local, state and federal agencies will continue to monitor the flood conditions at the Emergency Operations Center. To report flooding, call the center at (901) 515-2525 or (901) 636-2525.


• MLGW supervisors at the emergency operations center monitoring the effects of the flooding.
• Report flooding to (901) 544-MLGW (6549) or (901) 820-7878 (Quick access codes 1-1-1 (English) or 3-1-1(Spanish)

• No MLGW electric substations are expected to be affected.
• Stay away from anything electrical that may be in contact with water and always assume that it’s energized.
• You should never attempt to operate breakers or switches that are wet or under water.
• Never attempt to disconnect or remove your electric meter; call MLGW for assistance.
• Should water damage your home’s electrical system or appliances, have them inspected by a qualified, licensed professional.
• Operate all generators outside your home in a well-ventilated area.

• Water pumping stations are not threatened by the possible flood--they all sit above the potential flood area.
• Some wells that could be affected, but in the event that happens, MLGW will simply shut them down and utilize other wells to supply customers.
• Shut the water off if you have a shut-off valve inside your home. Do not shut the water off at the street.

• MLGW's natural gas services are not expected to be affected by the flooding.
• Power will be shut off for industrial site customers in the event they need assistance.
• Turn off gas at the meter then close gas appliance valves once the pilot goes out.
• The main shutoff valve is near your outside gas meter. Use a 12 to 15 inch adjustable wrench to give the valve a quarter turn in either direction. The valve is closed when the tang (the part you put the wrench on) is crosswise to the pipe.

Utility Flood Safety
• If your home or business is experiencing flooding, contact MLGW's emergency hotline at 528-4465 so we can disconnect your utility services if necessary.
• Stay away from anything electrical that may be in contact with water and always assume that it’s energized.
You should never attempt to operate breakers or switches that are wet or under water, even if it’s just to turn them off. Never attempt to disconnect or remove your electric meter; call MLGW to have this done.
• Shut the water off if you have a shut-off valve inside your home. Do not shut it off at the street.
• If you are using a portable generator, make sure it does not come into contact with water.
• If you do experience water damage to your home’s electrical system or appliances, you will need to have them inspected by a qualified, licensed electrical professional.


Memphis is Cooking “Come Hail or High Water”
May 02, 2011 
– Memphis in May International Festival organizers announced today that due to the historic flooding, the venue for the 2011 World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest will be moved. Read More ...


The Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau, in cooperation with local and state emergency management personnel, is closely monitoring Mississippi River levels. Click here to see updates on any weather-related closings. 

Find additional information on how to plan and prepare for floods, what to do during and after a flood and learn about available resources by visiting the following:
Federal Emergency Management Agency
NOAA Watch
American Red Cross
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Center for Disease Control
USA Freedom Corps Website
Posted: 4/29/2011 12:44:53 PM | with 0 comments

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The latest news from the Greater Memphis Chamber. For more information, contact Director of Communications Christina Meek at (901) 543-3504 ( or Communications Specialist Jenny C. Fish at (901) 543-3558 (