Image: The Honolulu Star-Advertiser | Article: Christine Donnelly
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Question : Regarding storm damage, my neighbor said to sign up online for financial assistance from the county. How do I do that ?
Answer : Sadly, we've heard from numerous people who've mistaken Honolulu City & County's call to submit damage reports online as a guarantee of financial aid ; it's not. Your neighbor is correct that the Department of Emergency Management wants Oahu residents and businesses to report damage from this week's storm, and has posted forms online to help them do so. However, as the department's website explains, the city will use the information it collects to determine whether it can request federal assistance—the forms are not applications for direct aid to individuals.
"Reporting damage is a voluntary activity and is not a substitute for reporting damage to your insurance agency, nor does it guarantee disaster relief assistance, " the website states.
That said, the aid you seek may become available if federal relief is granted, so you may wish to complete and submit a storm-damage report. The form for storm damage to an Oahu residential property is at, and the one for damage to an Oahu business is at.
As for physical help cleaning up storm debris, residents may call the Aloha United Way at 211 and request a hand from the Crisis Cleanup brigade, led by the group Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD ), the city says.