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Author: Lars Anderson
At the end of each week, we post a "What We’re Watching" blog as we look ahead to the weekend and recap events from the week. We encourage you to share it with your friends and family, and have a safe weekend.New Year – Get PreparedWith the start of a new year, many of us have once again made a resolution to live a more healthy life, shop less and save more, donate to a charitable organization, among many others. And although it’s sometimes difficult to keep the momentum after the first couple of weeks in the New Year, why not make a few small and simple changes to help you and your loved...
Posted On: January 4, 2013
Author: Thomas McCool
A bridge is one of those things that can so easily be taken for granted. Even one that we may rely on to cut our day-to-day work commute in half, or allows us more frequent trips to the grocery store, after a while, can seem like an assumed part of life. But when these critical conduits are lost, as was the case when Hurricane Irene devastated parts of Forkston, a township near the northeast corner of Pennsylvania, the significance of these vital crossings is more fully realized.          Recovery from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee is...
Posted On: December 27, 2012
Author: Lars Anderson
At the end of each week, we post a "What We’re Watching" blog as we look ahead to the weekend and recap events from the week. We encourage you to share it with your friends and family, and have a safe weekend.Winter weatherToday officially marks the beginning of winter, but cold, snowy, and icy conditions have already been felt by millions around the U.S.  Across much of the Midwest, a winter storm is bringing snow and ice that may cause headaches for those taveling over the weekend for the holidays.  As the map below from the National Weather Service shows, there are a lot of...
Posted On: December 21, 2012
Author: Deanne Criswell
Last August FEMA rolled out a program with the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) called FEMA Corps.  It’s made up of young people between the ages of 18-24, many of whom are interested in a career in emergency management. As part of our response to Hurricane Sandy, we deployed members of FEMA Corps to assist with our operation.  In the story below, 22-year-old Elizabeth McSherry shares her experience working in New York.New York, N.Y., Dec. 1, 2012 -- Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Byrne, right, talks to FEMA Corps members aboard the Training Ship Empire...
Posted On: December 21, 2012
Author: Michael Byrne
Editor’s Note: FEMA does not endorse any non-government entities, organizations, or services.The one silver lining of disasters is they can bring out the best in humanity. The world becomes connected – people in countries from across the oceans send food, money, blankets and other supplies. And neighbors help neighbors, paying it forward, and continuing to do so for as long as it takes. With the holidays approaching, the desire to pay it forward is even more heightened.To me, nothing illustrates how kindness begets more kindness in times of crisis than the story of 87-year-old Patsy Roberts,...
Posted On: December 20, 2012
Author: Craig Fugate
Ceiling panels missing. Wires dangling. Layers of dust. Floor tiles removed and concrete exposed. Five feet sections of walls cut from the ground up, and in some cases, completely removed. Flood lights and construction lights strung along corridors. The constant hum of fans.  Hard work. And determination.These were all things that Mike Byrne and I witnessed on Friday after spending a few hours visiting with employees at Bellevue Hospital and Coney Island Hospital.  A few weeks ago I also visited NYU Hospital, and the reason for the visits – because I believe it’s important to get a...
Posted On: December 17, 2012
Author: Lars Anderson
Sandy recovery continuesIt’s been a month and a half since Hurricane Sandy struck the Northeast, and the recovery effort continues at full speed.  Thousands of employees from FEMA and other federal agencies remain on the ground working to meet the needs of disaster survivors and offer assistance.  Here’s a quick look at how massive the recovery operation is: to date, over $1.09 billion in federal assistance has been approved for affected individuals and families across New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.For state-specific updates on Sandy recovery, visit:fema.gov/...
Posted On: December 14, 2012
Author: Ernie Mitchell
Each year Thanksgiving kicks off the holiday season in my home.  As soon as the meal is over and we settle in for the football game, we begin to create our holiday to-do lists.  Because of my two grandsons, decorating our home has become a very special tradition. Whether sorting through yards of twinkling bulbs, hanging ornaments on the tree, lighting the menorah, or displaying the seven symbols of Kwanzaa, many citizens across the United States cherish this time of year.  Unfortunately, these traditions may also increase the chance of a fire in our homes. ...
Posted On: December 11, 2012
Author: Hannah Vick
When Jack Zenkel, 10, was in the hospital with a serious head injury six years ago, his mother, Michele, stood vigil. She was worried, but determined to remain hopeful. While Jack was resting in his hospital bed, a woman with a small, furry therapy dog entered his room. Upon seeing the dog, Jack’s face immediately lit up.  For the next few minutes, Jack petted and snuggled with the dog.  “I was amazed at the wonderful effect the dog had on my son. The dog made a huge difference,” says Michele.As Jack’s condition began to improve in the hospital, Michele started thinking about the...
Posted On: December 11, 2012
Author: Liane Richardson
I am the County Administrator for a county approximately the size of Rhode Island.  With over 4,000 square miles, Lane County extends from the Pacific Ocean to the mountains, and includes dunes, wetlands, oceans, rivers, lakes, ski resorts, a large university, and a major north-south interstate.  The question of a large-scale disaster, man-made or natural, is not if it will occur, but when.CAPTION: Anniston, Ala., Oct. 25, 2012 -- Liane Richardson recently graduated the Technical Emergency Response Training for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive Incidents (...
Posted On: December 11, 2012

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