Press Release

November 7, 2019


Department of Financial Services' Mobile Command Unit on Site in Herkimer County to Assist Residents and Business Owners Impacted By Halloween Storm that Caused Power Outages and Flooding

DHSES, DOT, National Guard Continue Storm Response Operations

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the Department of Financial Services Mobile Command Center will be deployed to the Mohawk Valley to provide insurance help to residents affected by the Halloween storm that caused power outages and flooding across the state and forced a state of emergency declaration in 13 counties.

"We are continuing our cleanup and recovery efforts with additional personnel and resources to provide impacted residents with on-the-ground, one-on-one assistance, and we continue to urge all residents to exercise extreme caution," Governor Cuomo said. "These mobile command units are critical in helping residents with insurance claims, where widespread property damage has occurred, and I encourage anyone with questions about their insurance coverage to stop by the command center and get the facts."

Due to heavy damage impacting homes and properties, Department of Financial Services personnel will be staffing a mobile command unit in Herkimer County between at 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. today through Sunday to help residents and business owners file insurance claims as needed. The Herkimer County unit will be located at the Town of Newport Fire Department. Residents who are not able to visit the Mobile Command Center can call the Department's Disaster Hotline at 800-339-1759, Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 p.m. for help with insurance related issues.

Superintendent of Financial Services Linda A. Lacewell said, "DFS is deploying the Mobile Command Center and trained experts from the Consumer Assistance Support unit to help those in need. DFS is on the ground and ready to help homeowners and businesses with insurance claims, mortgage relief, and other issues. I encourage residents to seek DFS as a resource in the aftermath of this extreme weather event."

Last week, Governor Cuomo declared a state of emergency for Cayuga, Chautauqua, Cortland, Dutchess, Erie, Essex, Hamilton, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Saratoga, Warren and Jefferson Counties as heavy rains and 70-mph winds have caused flooding and power outages throughout most of the state. Additionally, state response equipment and resources, hundreds of state personnel, and 200 members of the National Guard were deployed to assist localities with response and clean-up operations, at the Governor's direction.

The Department of Transportation reports that all 118 road closures that were impacted on the state system have been re-opened with at least one alternate lane. DOT crews and emergency contractors will continue to perform restoration work until all roads are fully open. The New York Power Authority and the Canal Corporation continue to assess damage to assets and will collaborate with local municipalities on any necessary repair and rebuilding efforts that are identified. The Canal Corporation is planning work to fortify an embankment on Moyer Creek in Frankfort.

As New York's first responders, emergency management teams and National Guard remain on the ground assisting local partners with storm response operations, the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has also already deployed specialists who are actively assessing damage in order to apply for potential federal disaster aid. Division leadership remains in constant contact with FEMA to push for an expedited review on the federal side, once assessments are completed.