TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Contractors managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers installed the final temporary blue roof in the Florida Panhandle on Wednesday, December 5th, 2018.
"In the wake of a major storm like Hurricane Michael, we know that survivors want to return home to begin their recovery process," Lt. Col. Richard Gussenhoven, USACE Task Force Michael commander, said. "Over 7,800 blue roofs installed by our contractors are enabling thousands of qualifying Florida residents with damage to their homes to shelter in place while they plan repairs."
Hurricane Michael made landfall in Mexico Beach, Florida on Oct. 10, and President Donald J. Trump declared a major disaster in Florida the following day. As the lead for the National Response Framework’s Emergency Support Function 3, Civil Works and Engineering, USACE established the task force in Florida to perform missions assigned by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in coordination with the state government.
Task Force Michael installed 71 generators to provide emergency power and assessed 633 critical public facility assessments in the storm’s immediate aftermath, and starting Oct. 19 USACE contractors began installing blue roofs.
"USACE reduces the time to begin installing blue roofs in several ways, including having trained temporary housing teams ready to deploy from their home districts and using pre-coordinated contracting vehicles," Michael Ellis, Operation Blue Roof mission manager, said.
The application period for USACE-installed blue roofs closed on Nov. 16, a deadline extension by the end of which employees collected over 10,000 rights of entry forms at several physical locations in impacted counties, online and through a call center at the Corps’ Jacksonville District.
To be eligible for Operation Blue Roof, applicants had to meet the following criteria:
- Primary residences with standard shingled roofs with less than 50 percent structural damage (e.g. rafters, plywood decking).
- Metal roofs and mobile homes can be repaired on a case-by-case basis.
- If a home is being rented, the tenant must provide written permission from the owner prior to signing Right of Entry.
Operation Blue Roof provides homeowners in disaster areas with fiber-reinforced plastic sheeting to cover their damaged roofs until arrangements can be made for permanent repairs. Operation Blue Roof protects property, reduces temporary housing costs, and allows residents to remain in their homes while recovering from the storm. This is a free service to homeowners.
While Task Force Michael completes its blue roof mission, Jacksonville District continues to manage debris technical advisors who are supporting Florida county and municipality collection efforts.
Those who sustained losses from Hurricane Michael and have not yet registered for disaster assistance may do so at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362 between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. local time seven days a week.
Task Force Michael’s end-of-mission video is available at:
Images of the first blue roof installation on October 19 are available at: https://www.dvidshub.net/image/4836255/operation-blue-roof
FEMA’s mission: Helping people before, during, and after disasters.
For a list of resources available to individuals and businesses affected by Hurricane Michael, visit www.floridadisaster.org/info
For more Hurricane Michael recovery information, visit www.fema.gov/disaster/4399.
Follow FEMA and the Florida Division of Emergency Management on Twitter at @FEMARegion4 and @FLSERT. You may also visit FEMA and the Division’s Facebook pages at Facebook.com/FEMA and Facebook.com/FloridaSERT.