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-- more on the damage and devastation caused by very keen.
I read is mark Merritt president of -- associates that's an emergency preparedness and public safety consulting firm markets also.
Former deputy chief of staff at FEMA under President Clinton mark.
We've been hearing about flooding -- is the fact that so much of the damage from Irene was in is in the form of flooding does it make it more difficult to assess sit and -- to deal with.
Well Chris as long as the waters there a good accurate assessment can't be made so those areas that.
Only received storm surge is coming gone -- assessments can be made.
The reason that flash flooding those assessments can be made but the areas that were described earlier by your other correspondents where you have water still rising.
Creeks rivers streams still not -- yet it will take time before that -- receipts they can do those assessments.
You know we talk about how the damage may not been as much as some were anticipating but still to Jeff -- point 37 debts now.
And that number is increased by two just in the last hours so.
That that they -- the warnings were heated by some but not by all so what do you make of the media coverage.
Of this the one in general and the way the word got out there everybody at this was a series event.
Well I think for the most part the information was very well transmitted to everybody.
Everything from the network coverage newspapers and something new that we're just now seeing is the social media Twitter FaceBook and other things like that I think that's very effective.
However I do think that we ought to take a look at how we get this message out and in the next of that so maybe since we have the world's attention 24/7 for three days.
Hopefully we -- -- a little less time taking a look at reporters getting buffeted by winds on the beach and really start focusing on what the people need to be doing.
And what has been done as far as litigation so -- could take advantage of having everybody's attention when it really matter.
What are states doing unit Ed states and localities -- -- -- needs municipalities at the local level.
What are they doing in between still wants to prevent debts send that to help people become prepared.
More than just 2448.
Hours before landfall -- any better at this.
Absolutely they're getting better I think everybody got a wake up call from hurricane Katrina and they understood that this is.
All disasters are local and all local governments don't have the capacity to handle every event.
That's when the state steps and and when it exceeds the State's capacity that's from the federal government through FEMA and other agencies help them.
But in order to do that there has to be communication not only to the local government to their people.
But the woke up his need to be able to communicate with the states and the states into the communicate with FEMA and I think what you're seeing today is that has been successful.
What are the challenges right now as far as the clean up is it first of all I guess probably to wait for -- the all these rivers to crest so you know exactly what you have to clean up but what -- these states really faced with right now in terms of the challenges of of dating back to normal.
But we still have some really major life safety issues.
Those folks that I believe -- pretty irresponsible not -- the evacuation.
Like the folks out on hatteras -- are now gonna have to be dealt with with diverting vital resources to take care of them.
But that's going to be happening all over the place and that's gonna have to take place the other issue is debris.
They're gonna have to clear the debris out of the street's out of the water waste so that commerce can get going again.
What is the process for filing for a grant the approval of federal funds by these states who gets paid what.
Well there's two different categories from.
-- perspective there's individual assistance what the homeowner gets and then there's the public assistance side.
When everybody talks about the big numbers they're all talking about the public assistance which is the infrastructure.
That which is the responsibility of government whether it be state local or federal.
That is usually calculated to a joint public our preliminary damage assessment process.
Where locals say represented in the in the goes that is as a team and -- and I went what those damaged our and then they -- that if it really exceeds their capacity.
Then the president has the option -- to grant them different eligibility -- through that the disaster process.
Individual assistance -- a little bit differently it's more like an insurance policy.
Where the federal government has inspectors like a lot look at -- home.
And they see if they're eligible for individual assistance which is similar to what flood insurance recovery if they're not insured.
It -- to be based on your experience and what you've seen from the storm from -- reports and others.
Idea what it what are your thoughts on those who'll be uninsured because it appears as if it might be a record relatively large number.
-- gonna be unfortunate if everybody believes that the FEMA processed -- individual assistance gonna make them whole.
It's not meant to do that it's meant to try to get them to a point where they can move on.
And the answer is insurance and flood insurance is a relatively reasonable it all depends on what your financial situation as.
But because the federal government is made available everybody should have insurance and hope -- they do.
Those that don't the individuals -- program will try to help them get to a point where they can actually move forward.
Mark -- thank you so much fear in say we appreciate it.
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