March 31 Tornado Response, Recovery and Resources

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

​RESPONSE – What the City is doing

  • City crews continue to focus on cleanup efforts in neighborhoods impacted by the storm. Emergency Communications and Citizens Services (311) continues to take calls from citizens to determine their unmet needs.

Damage Assessments: We are continuing the assessment process and collecting information. Currently we estimate $7 million in residential damage.

  • 310 Total residential structures affected
  •   60 Minor – Structures habitable
  •   13 Major – Structures uninhabitable

Renters should start by calling the landlord. If the landlord can't or won't help, call the city Code Enforcement Office at 385-4421. Code Enforcement will then coordinate with the owner.

Homeowners should first contact their insurance companies, or a licensed and insured contractor if they do not have insurance. Homeowners can make simple repairs without contacting the city. If the house needs structural, electrical or mechanical repairs, permits may be required from the city's Permits & Inspections Office (385-4211).

Trash and recycling collection (black and blue carts) will be on normal collection days.

Storm Debris Collections: Regulations are relaxed to allow for items such as fencing, siding, wood, insulation, trees and other items damaged from the storm. Items may be placed at the curb at any time. Crews in boom trucks continue to make passes through impacted neighborhoods. Do not place any household hazardous waste at the curb. All HHW should be taken to the landfill for proper disposal. Please do not obstruct fire hydrants, utility boxes or any other structure, such as mailboxes. Please do not place debris under power lines. Please create separate piles for bagged items and storm debris. The City Landfill and Resource Recovery Center, 1989 Jake Sears Road, is open Tuesday through Saturday, 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visit for more information. ​

RECOVERY:  If You Haven't Done So Already, What You Need to Do

My property is damaged, what do I do?

  • Contact your insurance company.
  • Read your homeowner's policy. What coverages did you purchase?
  • Take photos of all of the damage.
  • Begin to dry out the building and personal property.
  • Keep a/c (or if cool, furnace) running, to assist in the drying out of the property.  If you have no heating/cooling, keep windows open and have fans blowing to assist in drying.
  • Try to find documents relating to the purchase of the damaged property.
  • If your carpet and pad have been damaged, cut and remove the carpet and pad; please save a small (2-feet by 2-feet square) piece of the carpet to show to the insurance adjuster.
  • If your carpet is damp, pull the carpet loose, remove the pad and dry the floor.
  • Keep oriental rugs wet – roll them up and take to professional cleaners for proper cleaning or evaluation.
  • Clean floors, walls, cabinets with mixture of 1 part bleach, 4 parts water.
  • Separate the damaged from the undamaged property. Begin writing a list of damaged property for the insurance adjuster.
  • Call appliance repair company to have technician clean, service and provide repair estimate for damaged appliances.
  • Call heating company to have technician clean, service and provide repair estimate for damaged heating/cooling equipment.

RESOURCES: Available Help

If you need assistance with…

Long-Term Recovery:For more information on the Tidewater Long Term Recovery group assisting Hurricane Matthew and Tornado Survivors or to begin communication with a Disaster Case Manager: (757) 932-0295,
Receiving Food:The Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia has multiple pantries available that do not require referrals. Call 877-HUNGERX to find the nearest one.
Yard Debris:Call 385-3111 to be placed in the list for CrisisCleanup assistance. Volunteer organizations are available to help with this type of request for assistance, but assistance is not guaranteed.
Minor Repairs:Things like roof-tarping are available through CrisisCleanup. Call 385-3111 to be placed in the list for CrisisCleanup assistance. 

Contact the Department of Housing & Neighborhood Preservation

Open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (757) 385-5750

Human Services:

Contact the Department of Human Services

Open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (757) 385-3200

Legal Assistance:

Legal Aid Society of Eastern Virginia

Open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (757) 827-5078

Replacing or Reporting Damage to your Automobile:Call your automobile insurance company directly. The loss of an automobile is not the same as property loss and/or damage. Report automobile losses and claims directly to your automobile insurance company.


If you want to help…

I want to make a monetary donation:The Virginia Disaster Relief Fund is a state-managed fund that supplements the critical work of nonprofit, faith-based and local long-term recovery groups. Learn more:
I want to donate food: You can drop off non-perishable food items at any Virginia Beach Fire and Rescue Station. You can also contact the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia (877-HUNGERX) for more information about donating food.
I want to donate clothing or other household items:The City is not accepting in-kind donations of clothing or household goods.  Contact the Salvation Army, Goodwill or other local nonprofits to donate your gently-used items.


Home Repair Scams: Consumers are increasingly vulnerable after natural disasters, causing scammers to prey upon unsuspecting victims. The Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR) Board of Contractors recommends the following 10 tips for choosing a contractor:

  • Hire a licensed contractor qualified to perform the type and amount of work you require. (Virginia law requires a state license for most contracting work over $1,000.  Exception: contractors performing services in localities in which they do not maintain a definite place of business are not required to pay a license fee or tax so long as their gross receipt does not exceed $25,000.  This means that contractors from outside Virginia Beach may perform services in Virginia Beach without a license so long as they don't make more than $25,000 from such work.)
  • Check for a current professional license online: or by calling (804) 367-8511. Check for a local business license by contacting the Commissioner of the Revenue at (757) 385-4515 or by e-mail:
  • Check references and review past work.
  • Get at least three estimates if possible.
  • Insist on a written contact. Do not sign anything unless you understand the terms.
  • Limit your deposit.  Pay 10 percent down or $1,000, whichever is less.  If the job requires custom-made items or special orders, then limit to 30 percent of the contract's total value.
  • Do not let payments get ahead of the work, and keep records of all payments.
  • Don't pay 100 percent of the bill until the work is complete and you are satisfied with the job.
  • Do not pay cash, which is hardest to track and recover in the event of a scam.
  • Save all documentation relating to your project, including warranty information.

Citizens who use medical devices that need electrical power can go to any OPEN library or recreation center to plug in and charge their devices.

Call 911 for emergencies and use 311 to report non-emergency issues or to seek additional information. ​

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