Call for More Regional Disaster Planning

I think the title of this article is unnecessarily antagonistic, but the point about the need for more and more effective regional planning efforts is worth considersing. See

How Local Governments Hinder Our Response to Natural Disasters. Some excepts follow:

Unfortunately, there was little successful inter-jurisdictional coordination in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. New York City’s Office of Emergency Management was theoretically responsible for coordinating the different city agencies. But it was quickly sidelined by the Mayor’s Office. The result was a haphazard approach that led to some notable failures with respect to evacuations and the safety of public housing residents.

On a larger scale, emergency managers from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania created a Regional Catastrophic Planning Team for precisely this kind of emergency. But when the storm hit, the RCPT’s plans stayed on the shelf, particularly in New York City. As one NYC emergency manager described it to me, “The federal government spent millions of dollars on [the regional plan] and…we did not do anything. All the planning and all the dollars that were
spent on regional planning [and] not once did we open the book to say, ‘Let’s do it this way.'”

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