WICHITA, Kan. -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to provide direct assistance for emergency protective measures to the 17 federally declared communities in South East Kansas.
"Our first concern always is to protect life and ensure safety in threatened and affected communities," said Michael L. Karl, federal coordinating officer for the disaster response. "This is the third federal disaster declaration for Kansas this year. Our strong working relationships with state and local officials have enabled us to coordinate with our other federal partners to respond quickly to state requests for water, ice and other critical equipment and supplies."
Activities underway in the disaster affected counties now include:
- Joint assessment teams with representatives from state and local government, FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) are conducting damage assessments in the 17 counties.
- Beginning July 3 and continuing, FEMA has delivered 13 truck loads of bottled water (each truck carries enough bottled water to supply 5,000 individuals with water) in Montgomery County to Coffeyville, Dearing and Independence; four truck loads of bottled water and two tanker trucks (each tanker provides 6,500 thousand gallons of water) of water are being delivered to Wilson County in the areas of Fredonia, Neodesha and Altoonia. In Elk County one truck load of bottled water has been delivered to Longton.
- Truck loads of ice are today being delivered to critical staging areas in the disaster declared counties.
- FEMA is also delivering two tanker-trucks of water to Wilson County.
- FEMA deployed a FEMA Federal Incident Response Support Team to Independence, Wilson County to support a Wilson County Unified Command.
- A FEMA Mobile Emergency Operations Vehicle has been deployed to Independence, Wilson County.
- FEMA has deployed an emergency information transmitter to Miami County.
The National Response Plan (NRP) mandates FEMA to coordinate federal unified disaster response efforts through one or more of 15 Emergency Support Functions (ESFs). The ESFs provide assistance in areas such as transportation, communications, public works and engineering, firefighting, mass care, housing, human services, public health and medical services, search and rescue, agriculture, and energy.
For the Kansas disaster response, the ESFs are represented by a variety of federal departments and agencies. These agencies? work to date includes:
- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers supplied two pumps and provided 26,000 sandbags in Kansas. They continue to coordinate and develop a water distribution plan; and will evaluate water and sewer treatment plants as needed. A response team will coordinate and provide ice.
- Also, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has regional offices responding to the flooding. EPA staff is conducting air and water monitoring as well as an assessment of potential hazardous substance releases and a documented crude oil spill. The EPA?s mobile command post has been dispatched to Coffeyville to coordinate pollution assessments.
- Department of Transportation has activated the Emergency Transportation Center to provide transportation resources for the mission including water, ice and other commodities.
- National Communication System (NCS) has activated and deployed an NCS field representative to coordinate communication issues within the affected area.
- General Services Administration has activated and deployed a leasing agent for leasing support.
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service is coordinating with impacted states in anticipation of providing assistance to food stamp recipients and operating a Disaster Food Stamp Program as needed.