"Before, During & After" is a podcast for emergency managers. Join us for insights into where emergency management is headed, conversation about preparing for the threats of tomorrow and how everyone has a role in keeping communities safe from disaster.
Future podcast episodes will cover FEMA’s work in implementing its strategic plan as well as recent disaster recovery efforts and resources available to better prepare for future risks.
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Episode 109:The National Water Center - Addressing the Nation's Flood Risks
On this episode, we catch up with Whitney Flynn, FEMA's liaison to the National Water Center, to discuss why the partnership is so critical in helping communities deal with flooding events before, during, and after they occur.
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A little over 10 years ago, congressional leaders responded to the growing need for water resources intelligence by having NOAA Build a National Water Center in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The center is charged with developing and providing this new generation of water prediction services for the entire nation. These services help to inform essential emergency management and water resource decisions from all time scales, including flooding and drought, low flow risks and information for routine and long-range water management and planning. In this episode, we catch up with Whitney Flynn, FEMA's liaison to the National Water Center, to discuss why the partnership is so critical in helping communities deal with flooding events before, during, and after they occur.
For emergency managers across the country, the Emergency Operations Center, or EOC, can be home base. It's a place for deconflicting challenges, finding solutions and coordinating efforts to a host of emergencies facing their communities. For many, the EOC is also a physical location, but in recent years, jurisdictions are finding ways to make their EOCs virtual as well. To that end, in October 2022, FEMA released the EOC How to Quick Reference Guide, which is a collection of guidance and best practices that can contribute to developing an EOC that can successfully meet the jurisdiction's needs. So, on this episode, we go to FEMA's National Integration Center to learn more about the guide and how it can help communities increase EOC capabilities for evolving environments.
In recent decades, wildfires have ravaged many areas of the country, especially the Western United States. Scientists note that climate change will worsen ongoing drought conditions, which will in turn increase the frequency and intensity of wildland wildfires. When the flames are extinguished, a new threat arises - flooding after fire. After large scale wildfires, the ground is left burned, barren, and unable to absorb water. That means when there's a rain shower or thunderstorm, rainfall that would normally be absorbed will run off and flow downhill, picking up ash and debris to form mudflows and flash flooding. This puts residents living in and around burn scars at greater risk. And because it takes time for the vegetation in burned areas to regrow, the risk of flooding after wildfire lingers for years. On today's episode, we turn it over to our partners in FEMA Region 8, located in Denver, Colorado, as we learn more about the risks of flash flooding and mud flows following a wildfire.
On this episode, we celebrate a great partner in emergency management. Joe Kelly, Director of Minnesota's Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management for the last 11 years, will be retiring at the end of December. Like many who serve in emergency management, the last few years have brought many unique challenges. So, we explore how Minnesota worked through those challenges during Joe's tenure and, he offers some valuable and innovate lessons for the future leaders of emergency management. Hey, we also had some surprise guests during this recording - FEMA Regional Administrator Tom Sivak, Deputy Regional Administrator Mike Chesney and also Minnesota’s Public Information Officer, Amber Schindeldecker, all make some short appearances during the conversation.
In late October, FEMA released the National Continuous Improvement Guidance. The guidance provides an approach to conducting consistent and rigorous continuous improvement activities before, during, and after real world incidences. Emergency managers and other whole community partners can use this document to effectively strengthen their continuous improvement capabilities, regardless of the organization's level of experience or resources. In this episode, we're going to walk through that guidance and also some technical assistance that FEMA is working to provide throughout the nation.
FEMA's "Before, During, After" podcast is available on Apple iTunes and Google Play to stream or download. Approximately 20 to 30 minutes in length, new episodes are posted bi-weekly and include transcripts.
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U.S. Fire Administration Podcasts
Join the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) and our nation's fire and emergency medical services (EMS) experts as we learn to reduce fire and life safety risks to our communities and emergency responders.
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