The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced Monday that it was, at the direction of President Barack Obama, already providing resouces and support to the victims of a massive, mile-wide tornado that blasted through Oklahoma City suburbs killing at least 51 people. That number is expected to rise.
Specifically FEMA activity includes:
• FEMA deployed an Incident Management Assistance Team (IMAT) to the state emergency operations center in Oklahoma City to coordinate with state and local officials in support of recovery operations. FEMA also deployed Urban Search and Rescue Teams and a Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) Team to Oklahoma to provide self-sustaining telecommunications, logistics, and operations support elements. FEMA also has additional personnel from the Denton, Texas regional office on alert.
• This afternoon, FEMA activated the National Response Coordination Center in Washington, D.C., a multi-agency coordination center that provides overall coordination of the federal response to natural disasters and emergencies, to support state requests for assistance. FEMA Region VI Response Coordination Centers (RRCC) located in Denton, Texas remains activated to coordinate any requests for federal assistance, if requested.
• A FEMA liaison officer is currently at the Oklahoma emergency operations center to assist with coordination efforts. FEMA’s regional office in Denton, Texas is in constant coordination and communications with Oklahoma’s emergency management team and local officials.
• FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration deployed preliminary damage assessments teams to help identify the damages in impacted counties.