How Should You Prepare For Disaster?

Disaster preparedness requires action at both the individual level and the community level. Local leaders should encourage citizens to have their own plan and be aware of their disaster risk. At the community level, local leaders should implement mitigation measures that ensure the safety of their citizens during a disaster, such as investing in safe… Read more

Tips for Local Governments: Financing for a More Resilient Future

As part of resilience planning, local leaders must assess how local hazards and threats may impact their financial resources in order to both strengthen existing resources and prevent the community’s finances from plunging into the red in the event of a natural or manmade disaster or threat. Ideally, communities should look at ways to build… Read more

Resilience Project Prioritization: The benefits of a structured approach

Faced with staff and funding shortages, small communities have few resources to spend on resilience planning and project implementation. Local leaders often have to make tough choices about which projects to fund and which to set aside. Yet deciding on which project to implement is easier said than done – resilience encompasses so many components… Read more

IBTS Community Resilience Assessment Framework and Tools (CRAFT)

Resilience is an on-going process that runs throughout every phase of natural disaster planning, response and recovery, and should be kept at the forefront of every decision communities make – not just regarding natural disasters. A resilient community is better-equipped to handle predicted and unexpected stresses and threats. Through our experience helping communities across the… Read more

The Basics: FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Program

FEMA dedicates funding on an annual basis for its Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Program to assist local and state governments with hazard mitigation planning and project activities. Integrating disaster mitigation into disaster planning and recovery enables a holistic, proactive approach to disaster management that can reduce disaster-induced damages, costs, and the recovery timeline. US states, territories,… Read more

The Basics: FEMA’s Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) Program

Each year, FEMA allocates funding to its Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) grant program for local and state governments to apply towards reducing or eliminating the risk of repetitive flood damage to properties covered by the . Flood mitigation activities, like restricting development in floodplain areas, stormwater management improvements, and updating building codes, can significantly reduce… Read more

Planning for Volunteers and Donations: Don’t Let Good Intentions Go Awry

Although always a welcome sight initially, volunteers and donations in the aftermath of a natural disaster can quickly become an additional burden. A swath of untrained, “spontaneous” volunteers can quickly result in a chaotic situation, and localities can find themselves amidst a “second disaster” as truckloads of material pile up at unorganized donation sites. Amanda… Read more

City of Central Lessons Learned: Navigating Disaster Recovery

No matter how prepared and well practiced your locality is to handle post-disaster recovery, putting these plans into action amidst the disarray after a major natural disaster presents unforeseen challenges that put even the best-laid plans to the test. Below, the City of Central, Louisiana, shares some of the strategies they successfully implemented to work… Read more

City of Central Lessons Learned: What to do before a disaster

The City of Central, Louisiana, although well-equipped to handle severe flooding, was forced to navigate unexpected obstacles in the wake of the historic August 2016 flooding. The historic storm dumped 24 inches of rainfall in a 48-hour period, isolating the City and flooding 60 percent of the City’s single-family homes. Reflecting on their experiences, City… Read more

Experiences Gained: Understanding Substantial Damage Determinations

After a flood event, homeowners often struggle to understand the requirements and procedures of the , presenting unexpected challenges in an already dire situation. Homeowners must have a clear understanding of the intricate processes of the NFIP, particularly the concept of , to determine what actions will need to be taken throughout the recovery process.… Read more