More than 5,000 Alaskans have applied for individual assistance following the Nov. 30 earthquake, according to Jeremy Zidek, spokesperson for the Alaska Department of Emergency Management. Zidek said the state is encouraging people to apply before the Jan. 29, 2019 deadline, even if their damage doesn't seem excessive.

"You may have some cracks in your drywall and think that those are easily repaired, but maybe those cracks represent something deeper within the structure of the home that's damaged," said Zidek. "We want everyone with damages to apply, start an application. If it turns out to be easily repaired, that's great, but if it's more substantial damage, then you've already started that application process."

Zidek said it would also be important to have an application on file if more damage is uncovered in the spring, or once the ground thaws.

"If they've started an application, we can amend it. But if they haven't started an application, it becomes much more difficult."

According to Zidek, the funds could also cover personal items or damage to a vehicle, even medical costs that are associated with the earthquake. He urged people to take pictures and keep receipts. He said typically payment is made 30 days after damage is verified, but may take longer in this case with so many people applying.

You can apply for individual disaster assistance from the state by calling 1-855-445-7131 or going to ready.alaska.gov.

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