By Alicia Roberts

AVONDALE, Pa. (CBS) — The cleanup and recovery efforts continue nearly a week after tornadoes and flooding from the remnants of Ida. While New Jersey and New York residents impacted by Ida qualify for federal aid, Pennsylvania residents are still waiting.

FEMA will be in Chester County Wednesday morning to survey both tornado and flooding damage from Ida. But for now, any aid is coming mostly from local community groups and neighbors helping neighbors.

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“This roaring started and the house started shaking,” Oxford resident Allison Read said.

Brand new home surveillance video obtained by CBS3 shows the moment an EF-2 tornado churned up in Oxford last Wednesday, barreling toward homes and anything in its path.

“The whole back of the roof was damaged from piece to piece, shingles everywhere,” Jeff Read said.

Nearly one week later, signs of destruction are still on display — trees uprooted, windows shattered and homes boarded up.

“We’ve got seven condemned houses in this neighborhood,” Allison Read said.

While Chester County’s emergency management’s deputy director says at least 250 homes were hit by Ida, state and federal help may not be guaranteed.

“There is nothing set up for Pennsylvania residents. Pennsylvania doesn’t have a state-level disaster fund like some other states may have,” Bill Turner said.

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For residential claims, there’s no threshold that automatically kicks in Pennsylvania — PEMA — or national — FEMA — funds.

“When it comes to individuals there is not a dollar amount. It’s all about telling the story of impacts and how bad it was,” Turner said.

That means documenting then pleading the case at each level of government, something that takes time and isn’t a sure thing.

Leaving help, at least in the short term, most often up to local boots on the ground.

“Local people, churches, the community. A whole bunch of high school kids were all here one day and they were just a huge help,” Jeff Read said.

Chester County has set up a multi-agency resource center for anyone with questions or needing assistance after Ida. It will be open this Wednesday and Thursday at the United Sports Training Center in Downingtown.

Get the latest on Ida’s Aftermath on CBS3, CBSN Philly and Learn more on how to watch and stream CBSN Philly for free, here.

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You can also download the CBS Philly Weather App for the most up-to-date weather forecast and to receive severe weather alerts. The app is free on Apple and Android devices.


Alicia Roberts