President Joe Biden on Monday approved Missouri’s request for a federal disaster declaration in response to severe flooding.

The declaration makes St. Louis-area residents eligible for federal help with temporary housing, home repairs and some health expenses.

Record rainfall caused widespread flash flooding across the St. Louis area July 26, then struck again July 28 as residents were still recovering from the first wave of flooding.

The weather service said the rain that began July 26 was the most prolific in the St. Louis metropolitan area since records began in 1874.

Authorities said two men drowned, dozens were rescued and many others were displaced during the storms.

Federal assistance available to St. Louis residents includes money to pay for uninsured medical expenses and property damage. Applicants can also get counseling and disaster-related unemployment assistance.

“This was historic, devastating flash flooding that has impacted thousands of people in the St. Louis region,” Missouri Gov. Mike Parson said in a statement Monday. “As we’ve seen at the assistance center events last week, there is tremendous need to support the families that have been so severely impacted by the record flash flooding."

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