Throughout the Midwest today, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is working with state and local levee districts, emergency responders, elected officials and other federal agencies to coordinate flood fighting activities. Indiana, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa are among the hardest hit right now, and Missouri and Nebraska are on alert.
My thoughts and prayers are with the people who live in the affected areas, and with our teammates, who are once again on the scene when the Nation needs us.
As of today (June 12, 2008), a total of 1,676,700 sandbags and 79 pumps have been issued to support state requests for assistance. There are currently 152 of our dedicated employees engaged in the response effort, and I expect more are on their way.
We are also supporting the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s efforts, by providing technical assistance for dam inspections and debris. In addition, we’re providing engineering and environmental expertise to FEMA’s housing planning team – which is an interagency group that works with the state to identify what housing options are available to meet the needs of that specific area.
In Iowa, we’ve really taken on a new and unique role when it comes to commodities, like tarps, drinking water or ready to eat meals. We’re helping state and local officials build their capabilities when it comes to ordering, delivering and distributing those goods. We’re coordinating with the state and local governments to provide temporary power to critical public facilities in Iowa, as well.
We’ve got a deep bench of seasoned pros who are already on this, and people coming out of the woodwork volunteering to help. I’m so proud to be a part of this team.