Alaska Governor Declares Disaster for 2 Bering Sea Communities

February 9, 2017

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker has issued a disaster declaration for two Bering Sea communities hit by storms earlier this winter.

The declaration, signed by Walker Feb. 1 and announced this week, says Savoonga and Gambell reported damages in excess of what they could handle on their own from storms between Dec. 28 and Jan. 4 that brought hurricane-force winds, extreme cold and storm surge.

Walker told legislative leaders that money remaining from prior disasters would be used for the estimated $2.9 million in state response costs.

That’s intended to help with things like temporary housing and other aid for affected residents and assistance in fixing local infrastructure.

Walker’s office, in a release, says winds damaged at least 30 homes in Savoonga and a water tank in Gambell. Gambell also reported damage to some homes.

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