Gov. Branstad's office releases info on flood preparation and response

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The Gazette

Media Release

Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds today released information on the state response to flooding in Northeast Iowa, as well as how the State of Iowa is assisting local communities in their preparations and response to anticipated flooding in the days ahead.  State resources coordinated by Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEMD) stand ready to assist local governments impacted by the flooding.  Gov. Branstad has verbally declared a disaster proclamation for Butler, Chickasaw and Floyd counties.  Additional counties are expected to be added to the disaster proclamation and a formal proclamation is expected in the days ahead.   

“We’ve been closely monitoring flooding that will significantly impact a number of counties,” said Branstad.  “The state of Iowa stands ready to assist all local governments as they respond to this threat.  We are already providing a number of flood mitigation tools to assist and expect more in the coming days.  This afternoon, I spoke with Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett informing him that the state stands ready to assist Cedar Rapids to prepare and respond to the expected flooding next week.  Iowans should take the necessary precautions to remain safe until the flooding has receded.”

Reynolds added, “Heavy rains have already affected Iowa families and businesses.  In the days ahead, we anticipate extensive flooding along the Cedar River eventually affecting Cedar Rapids.  The state is proactively assisting in staging sandbags, deploying water pumps and flood barriers, placing traffic barricades and providing assistance to law enforcement in affected areas.  I’ve been humbled by the response of friends and neighbors, law enforcement, emergency responders, non-profits and local governments to come together during challenging times like these.  The governor and I stand ready to assist the citizens of Iowa until the flooding has diminished and the recovery after.”

Summary of state efforts underway along active flooding:

·         Provided over 30,000 sandbags (4 dump truck loads of sand)

·         Deployed 8 water pumps

·         Placed 14 pallets of flood barriers, equal to 1,200 linear feet

·         Placed 50 traffic barricades

·         Pre-staged flood barriers

·         Provided assistance to local law enforcement

Disaster Proclamation process:

·  During disasters and other large and small emergencies, Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management assists local governments and coordinates the state's response activities, including interaction with federal government, non-profit, faith-based, volunteer, and private-sector partners.

duty officer, a member of the Division's operations office cadre, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to coordinate state resources, and ensure the quickest and most complete assistance is given during actual and potential emergencies.

HSEMD duty officers respond to a variety of incidents, ranging from hazardous materials spills to rail accidents, bomb threats, missing persons, and severe weather.

For many of the incidents, HSEMD coordinates assistance with local, state, and federal government agencies and the private sector.

HSEMD's response activities range from monitoring local incidents to full activation of the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) at the Joint Forces Headquarters in Johnston, Iowa.

At the SEOC, HSEMD and other government and private sector partners coordinate state response and recovery efforts.

Activations of the SEOC may last only a few hours in a small incident, or may extend for several weeks for large-scale disasters.

During an incident, if the need for resources has exceeded the county's capability to provide them, HSEMD may then request a Governor's Disaster Proclamation to cover the impacted counties.

Should the disaster go beyond the capabilities of the State, the governor could then make a request for a Presidential Disaster Declaration.



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