Hurricane Andrew Disaster Emergency Response Essay

Length: 2 pages Sources: 2 Subject: Weather Type: Essay Paper: #7743049 Related Topics: Emergency Management, Natural Disasters, Meteorology, Disaster Management
Excerpt from Essay :

Emergency Management

Hurricane Andrew made landfall in South Florida in August, 1992. Andrew had already devastated parts of the Caribbean, killing three in the Bahamas en route to Florida. Andrew struck just south of Miami, at Homestead, but did significant damage in Miami and the rest of South Florida. Hurricane Andrew killed 23 people in Florida and caused $26.5 billion in damage, mostly due to winds (Rubin, 2012). The disaster was declared as a hurricane, since the damage was primary due to the winds.

The President at the time was George H.W. Bush. The FEMA Director was Wallace Stickney, but Bush appointed Secretary of Transportation Andrew Card to head the recovery effort. This was a deficiency in the response, because Card had no experience in disaster management, and moreover created problems for FEMA. One thing he did was to insist that FEMA pay money directly to people, rather than utilize the channels by which they normally issued disaster relief, something that caused confusion (Rubin, 2012).

FEMA would ultimately pay out $290 million in federal assistance to 108,000 people who were affected by Andrew, and spend more than $746 million to repair public infrastructure. FEMA was able to work with survivors on the recovery program, which took years, and the agency sees Andrew as a real learning experience, since it was the most...

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The move was not particularly successful, owing to Card's lack of experience in the area, however. Reports at the time also noted a slow delay, whereby officials were ready to deliver aid, but the delay from the President in ordering the relief meant a delay in rolling it out. There was apparently a breakdown in communication and coordination at different levels of government in the aftermath of Andrew with respect to the aid program (Pear, 1992). The Pentagon had been tracking the hurricane and was ready to deliver aid even before the storm hit, but was unable to do so without authorization, as the people in charge seemingly were unaware of the Army's level of preparedness.

The appointment of Andrew Card was also quite contentious. He…

Sources Used in Documents:

References

FEMA (2012). Hurricane Andrew 20th anniversary is a reminder to prepare for emergencies. Federal Emergency Management Administration. Retrieved May 31, 2015 from https://www.fema.gov/news-release/2012/08/22/hurricane-andrew-20th-anniversary-reminder-prepare-emergencies

Pear, R. (1992). Hurricane Andrew: Breakdown seen in U.S. storm aid. New York Times. Retrieved May 31, 2015 from http://www.nytimes.com/1992/08/29/us/hurricane-andrew-breakdown-seen-in-us-storm-aid.html

Rubin, C.B. (Ed.). (2012). Emergency management: The American experience 1900-2010 (2nd ed.). Boca Raton, FL:CRC Press.


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