disaster preparedness

Latest News
7:00 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Coast Guard Releasing Oil Spill Response Plan

The Coast Guard is hosting a ceremony to launch the Geographic Response Plan.

The Coast Guard is releasing a plan today, devised with state and parish officials, about how best to respond to an oil spill.

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Latest News
7:00 am
Tue August 6, 2013

Environmental Groups Seek Stronger Storm Guidelines For Oil And Gas Plants

Gulf Monitoring Consortium report calls for changes.

A coalition of environmental groups is recommending tougher regulations on oil facilities to prevent possible leaks after severe storms. The group looked at damage reports filed after Hurricane Isaac last year.

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Latest News
12:00 pm
Mon August 5, 2013

Officials Investigating Train Derailment West Of Baton Rouge

Evacuations ordered after train derails.

Louisiana officials are investigating a Union Pacific train derailment about 60 miles west of Baton Rouge. About 100 homes have been evacuated.

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9:31 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Preliminary Jefferson Parish FEMA Flood Maps Now Available For Public Comment

A screenshot of the FEMA online map system, highlighting the new preliminary flood maps for Jefferson Parish.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has released new preliminary flood maps for Jefferson Parish, and are asking the public to participate in a 90-day comment period.

Flood maps are created by FEMA, in conjunction with the Army Corps of Engineers and local officials, and are used to calculate flood risk and determine flood insurance rates. The public comment period is an opportunity for residents, renters and business owners to review the maps and comment on them file appeals — the agency will accept public comment until September 30.

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Hurricane Season
7:00 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Army Corps Of Engineers Commander Confident In New 'Risk Reduction' System

Army Corps Of Engineers commander Richard Hansen confident in new 'risk reduction' system.

New Orleans is facing the 2013 hurricane season behind a $14 billion system designed to protect the region from a 100-year storm.

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4:42 pm
Fri June 14, 2013

Plant Explosion Claims Second Life

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:22 pm

Thursday’s chemical plant explosion in Geismar, La. has claimed another life. Seven remained hospitalized Friday with burns and respiratory complications.

Williams Companies CEO Alan Armstrong visited with workers and their families Friday. He called the incident a “major” explosion.

“This is a terrible and unprecedented tragedy," Armstrong said. "I’ve talked with a few of our employees and I know they are hurting, however, I’ve also seen and been inspired by their courage.”

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Latest News
7:00 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Get Ready: It's Hurricane Season

Officials throughout southeast Louisiana are asking residents to start planning now for hurricanes. A busy season is predicted.

Local officials review hurricane season planning.

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Latest News
7:00 am
Tue May 7, 2013

Sculptures Set To Mark Evacuation Pickup Spots

Evacuation locations will be marked by 14-foot-tall sculptures.
Credit Arts Council of New Orleans

Fifteen stainless-steel sculptures have just arrived and will soon be appearing throughout New Orleans. The unique public art project is designed to help save lives.

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Planet Money
2:35 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Why Is The Government In The Flood Insurance Business?

Hurricane Betsy hit the Gulf Coast in 1965.
Horace Cort AP

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 12:19 pm

There's a quick, one-word explanation for why the federal government started selling flood insurance: Betsy.

Hurricane Betsy, which struck the Gulf Coast in 1965, became known as billion-dollar Betsy. Homes were ruined. Water up to the roofs. People paddling around streets in boats. Massive damage.

This would be the time when you'd expect people to be pulling out their flood insurance policies. But flood insurance was hard to come by. You could get fire insurance, theft insurance, car insurance, life insurance. Not flood.

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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
4:15 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Lessons From Katrina Boost FEMA's Sandy Response

Victims of Superstorm Sandy wait in line to apply for recovery assistance at a FEMA processing center Friday on New York's Coney Island. The agency has been praised for its response to the storm.
Bebeto Matthews AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 12:22 pm

Following Superstorm Sandy, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has received good grades from politicians and even some survivors of the storm. In part, that's due to lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina seven years ago.

For Staten Island resident Deb Smith, whose house was flooded by the storm surge from Sandy, FEMA has been a savior.

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