FEMA Supports Mississippi in Response to Devastating Tornadoes
On March 26, FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell visited the devastated areas of Mississippi following Friday’s deadly tornadoes.
President Biden approved Mississippi’s request for an expedited major disaster declaration, making federal disaster assistance available to supplement recovery efforts. The declaration authorizes federal assistance to disaster survivors in Carroll, Humphreys, Monroe and Sharkey counties. This assistance may include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, crisis counseling, low-interest loans and other programs to help recovery efforts.
Visit FEMA.gov to read more.
DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell and other emergency management officials speak with a survivor of the devastating tornadoes that impacted Mississippi.
Without proper disaster planning, the safety and security of those we care about and the things we cherish may be in jeopardy. While each of us can take small steps to protect ourselves and our loved ones, preserving important items can require special attention and planning. That’s why FEMA has partnered with the Smithsonian Institution to help protect cultural heritage artifacts across the country through the Heritage Emergency National Task Force.
The task force, created in 2015, aims to protect our nation’s cultural heritage by training cultural stewards (such as museum curators), first responders and emergency managers to respond to incidents at cultural institutions and historic sites in a manner that preserves important artifacts. Participants practice evacuating a collection, gaining the skills and experience needed to better integrate the protection of cultural heritage into disaster risk management. Much of the training is conducted through the Heritage Emergency and Response Training program.
Visit the FEMA Blog to read the full story on how FEMA protects cultural artifacts before, during and after disasters.
FEMA released updated and consolidated guidance to help grant applicants successfully navigate its mitigation grant programs to enhance climate resiliency.
Following a multi-year effort and robust community engagement, FEMA updated the "Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program and Policy Guide" to reduce complexities and increase stakeholder accessibility to resilience grant programs.
This is the first update to the guide since 2015. The update now incorporates:
- Climate change and future conditions.
- Building codes.
- Capability and capacity building.
- Nature-based solutions.
- Community lifelines as key principles for grant programs.
- Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC), a new program created since the last version was released.
State, local, tribal and territorial governments can use the guide to help them through the Hazard Mitigation Assistance grant lifecycle process. FEMA’s mitigation grant programs provide funding for actions that address risks to and reduce disaster suffering from events like wildfires, drought, extreme heat, hurricanes, earthquakes and flooding.
FEMA remains focused on further simplifying its programs and processes to help the whole community become more climate resilient. This updated guide aligns with FEMA’s people first initiative, reduces program complexities to help catalyze community partnerships and promote equitable investments to reduce risk.
In addition to BRIC, other programs included in the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Guide are the Flood Mitigation Assistance program, the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program and the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program Post Fire. Several of these programs have seen historic levels of funding in 2021 and 2022.
FEMA will offer several webinars and developed materials that offer more information about the updated guide. Anyone interested in attending may register here.
A video is also available on FEMA’s YouTube channel explaining the guide. For more information about the guide update visit FEMA.gov.
FEMA published the "National Continuous Improvement Guidance" in Spanish on March 28. The guidance provides an approach to conduct consistent and rigorous continuous improvement activities before, during and after real-world incidents.
The guidance is intended for the whole community, including state, local, tribal and territorial partners; nongovernmental organizations; the private sector and other organizations with emergency management functions. For more information about continuous improvement as part of national preparedness, please visit FEMA.gov.
To download the guidance in Spanish, please visit https://preptoolkit.fema.gov/web/cip-citap/ncig. For questions, please contact FEMA-CITAP@fema.dhs.gov.
FEMA publica la Guía Nacional de Mejora Continua en español
FEMA publicó la Guía de Mejora Continua Nacional en español el 28 de marzo de 2023. La guía proporciona un enfoque para realizar actividades de mejora continua consistentes y rigurosas antes, durante y después de incidentes del mundo real. Está destinado a toda la comunidad, incluyendo colaboradores estatales, locales, tribales y territoriales; organizaciones no gubernamentales; el sector privado; y otras organizaciones con funciones de manejo de emergencias. Para más información sobre la mejora continua como parte de la preparación nacional, visite FEMA.gov.
Para descargar la Guía en español, por favor visite el enlace https://preptoolkit.fema.gov/web/cip-citap/ncig. Para preguntas contáctenos al correo electrónico FEMA-CITAP@fema.dhs.gov.
FEMA has awarded more than $12 billion since it created the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program in 2000 to prepare for and build resilience to fires.
One of the grants, the Fire Prevention and Safety Grants Research and Development, (R&D), is designed to reduce firefighter deaths and injuries. Academic and research institutions partner with fire services on grant-funded projects and share results across the fire service industry to improve firefighter safety, health and wellness.
As one example, Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) received nearly $1.5 million in Fiscal Year 2018 Fire Prevention and Safety Grants R&D funding to help wildland firefighters. Recognizing a lack of information regarding health and safety risks on the fireground, OHSU used the funds to create a tool informed by firefighters for firefighters to improve safety, health and wellness.
The team started by conducting a four-phase study using R&D funding to identify and prioritize needs for Total Worker Health education for wildland firefighters. During the first year, OHSU interviewed firefighters across the country, hosted focus groups in multiple regions including both rural and urban areas. It included multiple types of firefighters, from career to volunteer.
In the second year, OHSU assessed and collected data and found that fatigue, heart and respiratory health, and mental health were high-need areas for firefighter education. OHSU then partnered with the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation and the First Responder Center for Excellence to develop a web-based, modular educational program, “Advancing the Wellbeing of Wildland Firefighters.” By completing the modules, firefighters can learn how to improve heart health, hydration, nutrition, sleep, mental fitness and more to improve their overall health and safety.
The OHSU program is just one of many successes funded by FEMA preparedness grants. This R&D project will result in an innovative, effective and scalable Total Worker Health program and novel dissemination platform. The program will reduce mortality/morbidity and improve the safety, health and well-being of those who fight wildland fires.
To learn more about FEMA Assistance to Firefighter Grants, visit FEMA.gov.
An emergency manager analyzes his communities’ risk from storm surge.
HURREVAC, a free web-based tool provided by FEMA, has achieved an exciting milestone of 25,000 registered emergency management users.
The 25,000 users represent emergency managers from hurricane-prone states and territories that use HURREVAC to better understand and plan for hurricane risks and make informed response decisions when hurricanes threaten.
This milestone comes on the heels of an equally impressive accomplishment. Last year, during Hurricane Ian, 5,000 users were active in HURREVAC simultaneously, more than doubling the previous concurrent usage record. During that time, HURREVAC boasted 99.9% uptime and showed no service slowdowns.
In preparation for hurricane season, the HURREVAC team will launch several new updates and provide training to emergency managers. Updates will include a notifications center and increased points of interest capabilities within HURREVAC. FEMA will offer HURREVAC training at the National Hurricane Conference and the Florida Governor’s Conference; customized trainings are available by contacting email@example.com. FEMA will host the annual week-long HURREVAC webinar series from June 12-16. Register for individual days of the HURREVAC Webinar Series by visiting Training Events – HURREVAC.
HURREVAC is managed by the FEMA’s National Hurricane Program, a partnership program between FEMA, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Hurricane Center. To learn more about HURREVAC and register for an account, visit HURREVAC.com.
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