06 September 2005

What are they doing?

Yet more incompetence from our lovely executive branch: FEMA ignores an offer of help from Chicago.
Even before the storm hit the Gulf Coast on Monday, he [Chicago Mayor Daly] said, the city's Office of Emergency Management and Communications had contacted emergency response agencies in Illinois and Washington.

In the event of a disaster, the city offered to send 44 Chicago Fire Department rescue and medical personnel and their gear, more than 100 Chicago police officers, 140 Streets and Sanitation, 146 Public Health and 8 Human Services workers, and a fleet of vehicles including 29 trucks, two boats and a mobile clinic.

"So far FEMA has requested only one piece of equipment {ndash} [sic] a tank truck to support the Illinois Emergency Response Team, which is already down there," Daley said. "The tank truck is on its way. We are awaiting further instructions from FEMA."

Even before the storm hit the Gulf, Chicago was offering to help. Too bad FEMA doesn't believe in planning; they just lock the door after the horse has left the barn. You can read more about their obstructionism in the name of coordination from a list here. (Not that I'm opposed to coordination by one agency, but I think that you should have to demonstrate that you aren't a total fuck-up before being allowed to tell other helpful people what not to do. In any case, I'd have a lot more confidence in a press-release asking First Responders not to help unless requested by state and local authorities if it actually came from the state and local authorities, not from an ex-horse-show overseer and political supporter of the President.)

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