MEMA introduces property damage assessment app

MEMA introduces property damage tracking app

FORREST COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - Representatives from the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency gave a presentation to the Forrest County Board of Supervisors Monday on a new app that will have your property information pre-loaded for when severe weather strikes.

The Crisis Track app is used for damage assessment. It aims to speed up the process when dangerous weather hits the Pine Belt and impacts residents.

“What that means is when an event happens, a storm, tornado, hurricane, comes in, at the end of that event, we have to go out and do damage assessments," said Bob Buseck, chief information officer for MEMA. “The software will expedite the process that normally takes months into weeks.”

Karen Jacobs lives in Hattiesburg. Her home was impacted by a tornado in 2013. When she had to ask for help with repairs, she said she had to fill out lots of paperwork. According to MEMA, the Crisis Track app uses tax collector information to have all of your data pre-loaded before disaster strikes.

“By having the data loaded in the system, we can accurately bring in and report after the people go to the field," Buseck said. “Versus having to wait on paperwork to come back.”

The process helps MEMA get the information passed onto FEMA faster, but MEMA cannot promise you will get your assistance quicker.

As far as getting the money for your full property value, that’s the whole reason why MEMA is asking for the Board of Supervisors to help with getting the accurate information.

“Tax parcel data. That’s what we use to bring the values into the software to help with the assessments,” said Buseck.

MEMA hopes to have the collected data as soon as possible so the agency will be prepared for the next storm.

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