Federal disaster aid has been approved for the victims of the historic Christmas Day tornado outbreak that left nearly 190 homes and businesses damaged or destroyed, the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency reported Friday.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved disaster assistance covering several counties including Pearl River, Forrest, Hancock, Harrison, Lamar, Marion and Stone counties.
Pearl River, Forrest and Greene were three of five total counties hit by a powerful, long-tracked EF-3 tornado (140 mph winds) that remained on the ground for more than 60 miles on Christmas Day, leaving widespread damage and at least a dozen injured.
This was one of five confirmed to have hit the state that day.
Loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate.
Homeowners and renters are eligible for loans up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.
The SBA will open a Disaster Loan Outreach Center at the Old Armory on Highway 11 in Poplarville on Tuesday at 8 a.m. to issue applications and assist survivors with completing their applications.
The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is March 5. The deadline to return economic injury applications is Oct. 4.