SAND SPRINGS, Okla. — As floodwaters recede, clean up is underway in communities across Green Country.
Tulsa city leaders and emergency management personnel held a news conference May 31 to go over the beginning of flooding recovery efforts.
Mayor G.T. Bynum warned residents not to return to evacuated homes until they have been determined safe by the city.
WATCH the full news conference from Friday, May 31 here:
Green waste pick-up is available for Tulsa residents with storm debris including tree branches, leaves, etc.
Residents across the state are encouraged to report storm damage to Oklahoma Emergency Management officials.
Damage can also be reported by calling 211.
FEMA assistance and help from local organizations is the next best option for those without insurance.
Government officials told the crowd at Broadway Baptist Church they are working to establish a walk-in location for people to apply for FEMA assistance.
FEMA can provide up to $35,000 in individual assistance within weeks of getting an appraisal, according to Lankford.
A long-term recovery committee made up of volunteers and ministries is working to help people with any additional unmet needs.
Tulsa County will also place dumpsters in several locations for debris during the recovery process.
Tulsa County Sheriff Vic Regalado said deputies will patrol neighborhoods in need, particularly Town and Country and Candlestick Beach, to keep residents safe.
The Tulsa Health Department is offering several tips as well as resources for those dealing with flooding.
Information about free tetanus shots, safely reentering flooded homes, and more is available here:
Tulsa Parks golf courses will accept sand bags from residents who are looking for a way to dispose of them after the recent flooding.
Both Page Belcher Golf Course at 6666 S. Union Ave. and Mohawk Park Golf Course at Mohawk Boulevard and Winston Avenue will accept sand bags any day of the week from sunrise to sunset.
Tulsa Golf General Manager Tom Wolff said the sand bags could be used to secure tarps on the golf courses during the winter, and possibly for topdressing tee boxes.
Senator James Lankford, Oklahoma’s insurance commissioner and Tulsa County officials held a meeting Thursday night in Sand Springs to go over recovery options for those affected by significant flooding.
Officials encouraged people to file claims with their insurance provider if they have flood insurance, though many in attendance said they did not.
Some members of the audience became heated when it came time for an update from a representative of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
It started when a man questioned why additional water wasn’t prereleased from the dam ahead of the rainfall.
Corps representative Mike Abate questioned the accuracy of weather forecasts and said officials wait until water is on the ground before making any decisions regarding water release at the dam.
Some in the crowd were not satisfied with the response.
Watch the entire meeting here. The exchange between Abate and members of the crowd starts at about 28 minutes in:
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