Disaster Recovery Planning for Small Businesses

From the SBA some useful resources for small businesses. And an upcoming webinar. See: Prepare My Business


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New Rail Safety Rules in Canada and the U.S.

Recently, both countries have issued new rules. According to this Reuters article, the Canadian measures are more stringent. See: Canada’s rail safety measures: earlier and tougher than U.S.

Canada quietly issued new details on rail safety regulation last week that included specifications for the next generation of tank cars that are tougher than some of the options proposed by the U.S. Department of Transportation on Wednesday.

The safety proposals by Transport Canada for hauling dangerous goods, released online on Friday, builds on measures first announced in April that will require older DOT-111 rail cars used for carrying crude oil be phased out by May 2017.

The measures are a response to a massive surge in crude-by-rail shipments in recent years and a string of high-profile disasters involving older tank cars prone to punctures, including one that killed 47 people in Quebec, Canada.

A direct link to the proposed new  U.S. regulations is here.

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Post-Disaster Stress – in affected communities

The Wall St. Journal had an interesting but sad article today about the hardships and stress the local residents of the small, war-town  towns where the downed Malaysian airliner crashed. See: After Flight 17 Crash, Agony, Debris and Heartbreak in Ukraine Villages

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Some Details on the National Disaster Resilience Competition

Please see these two documents from the Housing & Urban Development (HUD) Portal.

In an earlier post I noted the National Disaster Resilience Competition Overview.  Newly available are the the Eligibility Guidelines.  [Neither document is dated.]

Many thanks to Elaine M. Sudanowicz for providing me with these  URLs.

Posted in Resilience | 2 Comments

Coastal Disasters – new NAS report

Article in the HuffPost: Scientists Urge For Funds To Prevent Coastal Disasters, Not Just Recover From Them.

A group of top scientists has called for a fundamental change to how the United States deals with risks to its Atlantic and Gulf coasts from storms and climate change in a National Research Council report released Wednesday.

Urging a “national vision” toward addressing coastal risks, the report comes on the heels of a Reuters analysis published earlier this month showing that coastal flooding along the densely populated Eastern Seaboard of the United States has surged in recent years, with steep financial consequences.

The great majority of money — most of it federal dollars — spent on coastal risks goes toward recovery after a disaster rather than on planning for and mitigating against storms, climate change and sea-level rise, the report said.

The direct link to the NAS for a free download of the full, 130 page report that is titled Reducing Coastal Risk on the East and Gulf Coasts is here.

Here is another account, from the National Geographic.

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Drought is Different

From the National Geographic: Storms Get Headlines, but Drought Is a Sneaky, Devastating Game-Changer. As California and the American West dry up, a way of life is threatened.

A friend and I were recently discussing how difficult drought is.  He  asked how do you do mitigation for a drought. And I asked what does recovery from a drought entail? We welcome some input to this discussion.

Update: Be sure to read the thoughtful comments from readers too.



Posted in drought | 5 Comments

DHS- “simplified!”

This is not exactly on topic, but I could not resist sharing it. First of all, thanks to Phil Palin of HLSwatch blog for pointing it out. And full credit to the Annenberg Foundation for the whole story.

Given the complex relationship of Congressional committees to DHS, it is a wonder the staff at the agency can get anything done other than testify to the many committees !! Congress has resisted streamlining its oversight ever since DHS was formed.

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