Rhode Island Commerce | Emergency Assistance
For Business Impacted by the Washington Bridge closure
  • NEW: SBA’s Washington Bridge Business Recovery Center is now located at East Providence City Hall (145 Taunton Ave).
  • Customer service representatives are onsite to assist businesses and nonprofits.
  • Low interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available to businesses in Providence, Kent, and Bristol counties, at interest rates of 4% for businesses and 2.375% for nonprofits.

For more information, please contact SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov


RI 20130: Road Closure Due to Sudden Bridge Failure

Incident Date: December 11, 2023 and continuing

Type of Loans: Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) only

Working capital disaster loans to meet your operating expenses until full recovery

Counties: Providence, Bristol and Kent in RI; Windham, CT; Bristol, Norfolk, and Worcester in MA

Eligible: Small businesses, non-profit organizations Interest rate: 4% for businesses; 3.25% for non-profits

Application deadline: September 16, 2024

Note: Must show a direct relationship between your financial losses and the incident

> Download SBA’s Washington Bridge Closure Fact Sheet


SBA Business Recovery Center  (East Providence City Hall, 145 Taunton Avenue, East Providence, RI 02914)

Hours:            Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

                          Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (except for Holidays)

                          Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (except for Holidays)

Closed:          Sundays                   

For Business Impacted by Severe Storms, Flooding, and Tornadoes (September 10 -13, 2023)
  • SBA assistance covers Providence County, and the continuous counties of Kent and Bristol, RI.

RI 20114: Severe Storms, Flooding, and Tornadoes

Incident Date: September 10-13, 2023

Type of Loans: Physical disaster loans AND working capital loans (EIDLs)

Primary County: Providence, RI

FEMA grants for homeowners and renters; physical disaster loans and EIDLs available

Adjacent Counties: Bristol and Kent in RI; Windham, CT; Bristol, Norfolk, and Worcester in MA

No FEMA; no physical loans – EIDLS only

Interest rates: As low as 2.5% for homeowners and renters; 4% for businesses; 2.375% for non-profits

Application deadline: March 7 for physical loans; October 7 for EIDLs

>> Download SBA’s September 2023 Severe Storms, Flooding, and Tornadoes Fact Sheet


September Storms | Business Recovery Center (North Providence Public Safety Complex, 1835 Mineral Spring Avenue, North Providence, RI 02904)

Hours:            Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

                          Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Closed:          Sundays    

For Business Impacted by Severe Weather (December 17 - 19, 2023)

RIEMA is requesting business owners who sustained losses and/or damages from the severe weather event from December 17 – 19, 2023 to complete an initial damage assessment form. Submitting this information will assist the State in determining whether to pursue federal reimbursement. Click on the following link to complete the Damage Assessment Form:

Business Form – Click Here

For Business Impacted by Severe Weather (January 9 – 11, 2024)

RIEMA is requesting Individuals and business owners who sustained losses and/or damages from the severe weather event from January 9 – 11, 2024 to complete an initial damage assessment form. Submitting this information will assist the State in determining whether to pursue federal reimbursement. Click on the following link to complete the Damage Assessment Form:

Business Form – Click Here

For Business Impacted by Severe Weather (January 12 – 14, 2024)

RIEMA is requesting Individuals and business owners who sustained losses and/or damages from the severe weather event from January 12 – 14, 2024 to complete an initial damage assessment form. Submitting this information will assist the State in determining whether to pursue federal reimbursement. Click on the following link to complete the Damage Assessment Form:

Business Form – Click Here

Resources for Small Businesses

For more information about small business resources at Rhode Island Commerce, click here

Ways to Support Impacted Businesses

#ShopLocalRI: Our state’s diverse business community has everything you need to get through your holiday shopping lists. As always, we encourage all Rhode Islanders to support locally owned-businesses.

Spread the Word: If you find something you love at your favorite local business – whether in-person or online – spread the word on social media with the tag #ShopLocalRI. Word-of-mouth goes a long way in helping businesses attract new customers.

Engage with Local Businesses: The owners of your favorite neighborhood businesses are working hard to stay in touch with their customers. If you are shopping in-person or online with these local businesses, consider proactively asking them how you can help share their messages with your friends or social media networks.

Plan a Night Out: Do you have a favorite restaurant in an area impacted by heavy traffic? Now is a great time to give these businesses some immediate support by treating yourself (or your friends, colleagues or family members) to a gift card.

Be Patient: Business owners are doing their best, in the moment, to problem-solve and navigate unforeseen obstacles brought on by this sudden closure. It is possible this may lead to adjusted hours of operations or delayed service. We encourage Rhode Islanders to stay patient as these issues are addressed.

Updates from RIDOT

For more information about the Washington Bridge closure from the RI Department of Transportation (RIDOT), click here

Suggested Detour – Local Traffic in East Providence

Suggested Detour – Southeast Massachusetts west of Fall River, MA

Suggested Detour – Southeast Massachusetts east of Fall River, MA

YOUR BUSINESS ADVISOR

YOUR BUSINESS ADVISOR

YOUR BUSINESS ADVISOR

YOUR BUSINESS ADVISOR

NEWSLETTER