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Dec-06-2007 14:20TweetFollow @OregonNews
FEMA and State Officials Look at Oregon Flood Disaster Areas (VIDEO)Tim King Salem-News.com
FEMA will decide if the damages are beyond the capabilities and resources of state and local governments.
(SALEM, Ore.) - At the request of Governor Ted Kulongoski, federal and state officials are conducting Preliminary Damage Assessments on homes, businesses and public facilities hard hit during this week’s storm and flooding.
"In an emergency, every second counts and preventable delays are unacceptable," Governor Kulongoski said.
According to Oregon Emergency Management Director Ken Murphy, PDA teams consisting of representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and his office will visit and inspect damaged areas, document damages and talk with local officials.
“We’ll also be reviewing Oregon National Guard fly-over video footage of impacted counties,” said Murphy. “It’s a partnership effort designed to provide a clear picture of the extent and locations of damage.”
FEMA Regional Administrator Susan Reinertson stated, “We’ll be looking at the overall scope of damages to establish if recovery is beyond the capabilities and resources of state and local governments.”
“State and local officials are still heavily engaged in life saving/life sustaining operations, and we’ll be careful that our joint assessments do not intrude on these priority missions.”
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FEMA was heavily criticized over their response to flood victims in Louisiana and other southern states in the wake of the Hurricane Katrina disaster. The agency lost public credibility over their slow and inadequate response.
Then during the recent Southern California wildfires, the agency went theatrical, holding a fake press conference that left them smelling like roses, that is until the bogus affair was exposed a few days later. See FEMA Quick to Put on Fake Press Conference and Did FEMA Name a Fake Press Conference Scapegoat?
FEMA coordinates the federal government’s role in preparing for, preventing, mitigating the effects of, responding to, and recovering from all domestic disasters, whether natural or man-made, including acts of terror.
Governor Kulongoski says he has taken unprecedented steps to assist the counties in responding to the disaster, authorizing the use of the Department of Corrections mobile kitchen unit to travel to Vernonia to provide citizens and work crews with hot, nourishing meals. The Red Cross is involved as is the Oregon National Guard.
"We cannot let red tape keep us from getting people the immediate help they need," said Governor Kulongoski.
As far as the damage goes, this YouTube video sent in by a member named crallspace, shows Dallas, Oregon on December 3rd when parts of the town were completely underwater.
The next video clip is from YouTube member DMarc85, it shows Portland, Oregon. He wrote: "This is footage of floods caused by a tropical storm that hit the NW in early december 2007. Fanno Creek usually never gets more than ten feet wide on average. As you can see it looks more like Fanno Lake."
This is my favorite, from YouTube member DylanABennett, "Two local guys surf a standing wave in the floodwaters of Willamina, Oregon." Surfers have been surfing river waves for years, but it still might be relatively new in this Oregon logging town in the mountains near the Central Oregon Coast.
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