Saturday, September 17, 2005

FEMA Respone

Stardate 59091.7 (9-17-2005)
A Shadow did a post about FEMA, and the flak they have been taking from the media. To put a comment on there, I'd need to create an account, which I don't want to do just to reply. And I have a blog as well. So here's my comments:

Could I have done a better job? No.
Did FEMA do the best it could with the resources it had? Yes.
Were the resources totally inadequate for the task? Yes.
Was the scope of the disaster unanticipated? Nope. The fact that a cat 4 or 5 hurricane would hit the Gulf Coast has been talked about since before warnings of a major earthquake on the Wasatch Front.

The damage Katrina did dwarfs Andrew and Camille. But the fact that FEMA and others were overwhelmed by the relief efforts is frightening. They had several days of warning. An earthquake or volcano generally does not give that.

I heard a commentator a couple of days after Katrina say the evacuation of New Orleans was the fastest, most efficient, and well done of any major city. So long as you had a car and money. That was an unanticipated problem. I heard and interview with the director of the SuperDome say the Sunday before the building could easily withstand a category 5 hurricane. Now I am hearing it will need to be torn down.

There are a lot of lessons here. The communications breakdown hampered relief efforts. Air efforts were overwhelmed with rescues, and unable to do anything about dropping food.

From the media coverage, no one was in charge. The President was in San Diego. Mike Brown admitted he did not know anyone was at the NO Convention Center until CNN reported it.

As I said, there are a lot of lessons. FEMA takes the heat over it, because this is thier responsibility. The media is slanted to the sensational, but it does drive the need to make reforms to handle future issues.

Weight this morning: 189 lbs

End of Entry

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