Where's the blame? I have read all of the posts and most, not all are blaming our government that they dropped the ball. Below is a letter that was sent to every form of local, state and federal departments, including fire, ambulance, hospitals, local government etc. This directive was sent so that we as responders would be on the same page in the event of an emergency.
December 17, 2003 Homeland Security Presidential Directive/Hspd-8
Subject: National Preparedness
(1) This directive establishes policies to strengthen the preparedness of the United States to prevent and respond to threatened or actual domestic terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies by requiring a national domestic all-hazards preparedness goal, establishing mechanisms for improved delivery of Federal preparedness assistance to State and local governments, and outlining actions to strengthen preparedness capabilities of Federal, State, and local entities.
Last September when the Secretary of Homeland Security sent a letter to the nation’s governors, he outlined a series of steps that must be taken and actions that should be taken in FY 2005 to become compliant with the National Incident Management System (NIMS).
The NIMS Integration Center suggests that the following take the course in FY'05:
Executive Level – Political and government leaders, agency and organization
administrators and department heads; personnel that fill ICS roles as Unified
Commanders, Incident Commanders, Command Staff, General Staff in either Area
Command or single incidents; senior level Multi-Agency Coordination System
personnel; senior emergency managers; and Emergency Operations Center Command
or General Staff.
Managerial Level – Agency and organization management between the executive
level and first level supervision; personnel who fill ICS roles as Branch
Directors, Division/Group Supervisors, Unit Leaders, technical specialists,
strike team and task force leaders, single resource leaders and field
supervisors; midlevel Multi-Agency Coordination System personnel;
EOC Section Chiefs, Branch Directors, Unit Leaders; and other emergency
management/response personnel who require a higher level of ICS/NIMS Training.
Responder Level – Emergency response providers and disaster workers, entry
level to managerial level including Emergency Medical Service personnel;
firefighters; medical personnel; police officers; public health personnel;
public works/utility personnel; and other emergency management response
This training and program must be taken by every public service personal. It is offered free-of-charge through the Emergency
Management Institute at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/crslist.asp.
In this free course required by the government states that any emergency start with the local government. Then proceed up to the federal government.
If I remember right on Aug. 26, 2005 10,000 National Guard troops are dispatched across the Gulf Coast. President Bush signs money to be released for storm relief.
Aug 27th New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin declares a state of emergency and urges residents in low-lying areas to evacuate.
NOTE: An ordinary person out for a walk averages about 16 minutes per mile or 3.75 miles per hour. Imagine if you’re scared.
Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour declares a state of emergency. A mandatory evacuation is ordered for Hancock County, 65 kilometers east of New Orleans on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
Aug. 27, 2005 Fema Directory advises people of storm path to prepare for being on there own for at least 72 hours.
Aug. 28, 2005
Mayor Nagin orders a mandatory evacuation for New Orleans, but 10 shelters are also set up, including the Superdome, for those unable to leave. Evacuation orders are posted all along the Mississippi coast. Alabama Governor Bob Riley declares a state of emergency.
Aug. 29, 2005
Katrina makes landfall near Buras, La., at 6:10 a.m. CT (7:10 a.m. ET). U.S. President Bush makes emergency disaster declarations for Louisiana and Mississippi, freeing up federal funds. At least eight Gulf Coast refineries shut down or reduce operations. Airports close in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, La., Biloxi, Miss., Mobile, Ala., and Pensacola, Fla.
Aug. 30, 2005
Two levees break in New Orleans and water pours in, covering 80 per cent of the city and rising in some areas to six meters deep.
Aug. 31, 2005
"At first light, the devastation is greater than our worst fears," says Blanco, Louisiana's governor. Looting grows dramatically, with people using a forklift to smash into one pharmacy. Blanco asks the White House to send more help, and New Orleans police are called off search-and-rescue missions to combat out-of-control looting.
Sept. 1, 2005
Looting, carjacking and other violence spreads, and the military decide to increase National Guard deployment to 30,000.
Sept. 2, 2005 Thousands of National Guardsmen arrive in New Orleans bringing food, water and weapons: they are greeted with a mix of gratitude and rage.
Sept. 3, 2005
President Bush orders 7,200 more soldiers and marines to the Gulf Coast, and the National Guard sends an additional 10,000 as well - bringing its total to 40,000.
Is the state of Mississippi and Alabama complaining about how slow it has been for them to receive aid and rescue. NO!! Why? Because they had a emergency plan and put it into effect.