Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Florida's Emergency Management Director headed for FEMA chief confirmation

Craig Fugate, President Obama’s nominee to head FEMA, sailed through his confirmation hearing Wednesday before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and made strong assurances on Hurricane Katrina recovery and the future of the disaster response agency.

I'd say he's qualified:

As Florida’s emergency management chief since 2001, Fugate has responded to eight major hurricanes. A certified firefighter and paramedic, he also spent 10 years as a local emergency manager in Alachua County, Florida. He has managed the response to 11 federal disasters, 23 state emergencies and has overseen more than $4.5 billion in federal disaster assistance.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Good News?

Headlines this week in Florida were that due to the loosening of the credit markets, the State would have the ability to bond an additional $5 billion, if needed, giving us $8 billion for the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund.

The fund was established after Hurricane Andrew in 1992, to back up insurers in the event of a particularly devastating hurricane, or a quick succession of smaller ones. It now has an exposure of more than $28 billion with less than $8 billion on hand to pay claims.

Here's the round up of news coverage (although most of it says the same thing)

Ironically, Governor Charlie Crist found out about this via telephone as his trip to the state capital in Tallahassee was delayed due to Tornado warnings near his home in St. Petersburg, FL.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

2009 Hurricane Forecast Lowered

Colorado State University forecasters Phil Klotzbach and Dr. William Gray cite cooler Atlantic Ocean temperatures and weak El Nino developing in the Pacific Ocean.

December forecast
April update
Normal (based on 1950-2000 data)
Named storms 1412
Hurricanes 76
Hurricane days
Intense hurricanes
Intense hurricane days
Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE)

Read the details in here

Sunday, April 05, 2009

A Second Disaster hits Homestead

17 years after Hurricane Andrew, another disaster has hit Homestead, Florida. Over 2200 homes in foreclosure since October due to overbuilding & speculators - Story