"State, Federal Emergency Centers on Y2K Alert"greenspun.com : LUSENET : HumptyDumptyY2K : One Thread
I thought I'd post this here since the TB2000 forum is temporarily down.
[Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only]
Tuesday, December 28, 1999
State, Federal Emergency Centers on Y2K Alert
Safety: For the first time, every response center in the nation is activated and on the job.
By ELIZABETH SHOGREN, Times Staff Writer
WASHINGTON--The Year 2000 computer bug has already caused what no hurricane or mudslide or tornado ever has: Every state and federal emergency response center in the nation has been activated.
If the latest forecasts prove correct, the thousands of emergency management professionals will be no busier this weekend than the proverbial Maytag repairman, U.S. officials said Monday.
But if the unexpected happens and Y2K problems disrupt power supplies, water or sewage systems, transportation networks or other key infrastructures, the experts will be on the job--and not partying.
"Having all 50 states and all federal emergency centers up and ready to respond has to be historic," said John Koskinen, the head of the President's Council on Year 2000 Conversion.
In some states, including California, the National Guard has been called into service over the New Year's holiday weekend. In addition to preparing to deal with Y2K disruptions, the Guard will be geared up to respond to incidents of domestic terrorism. In the event of a terrorist attack, the FBI will be the lead federal agency. The Federal Emergency Management Agency would be responsible for "consequence management," said FEMA spokeswoman Mary Margaret Walker.
FEMA will have 600 people working at its Washington headquarters and 10 regional centers, including one in San Francisco, from today though Jan. 4.
FEMA will step in only if asked to do so by a state. Its job is to coordinate the activities of other federal agencies and ensure that people have secure shelter, food and clothing. In addition, FEMA has 42 urban search and rescue teams, which it can deploy if necessary.
"What is unusual about it is that all of our regions are activated at once," Walker said. "When there is a particular event, there may be one or two regions operating. Here we have all 10. This is certainly not business as usual."
Walker contrasted Y2K with a hurricane: Unlike other potential disasters, it can be predicted in advance. But unlike a hurricane, its path of destruction cannot be pinpointed.
FEMA is ready to help states and localities with whatever they need, from generators to water to food.
Altogether, federal and local government agencies and private businesses in the United States are spending more than $100 billion to ward off Y2K computer fiascoes by finding, fixing or replacing billions of lines of computer code and components.
Despite the extensive preparations, some states have mobilized their National Guards to respond to any Y2K problems that occur. The California National Guard has called up 1,700 of its 20,000 troops for a weekend of duty beginning Thursday and ending Sunday.
Gov. Gray Davis decided to call up the Guard as a "contingency" plan. The state will not have to pay the bill because the federal government will treat it as a regularly scheduled weekend deployment, said Maj. Louise Goodwater, a spokeswoman for the National Guard in California.
"What we're prepared to do is support the civilian authorities with transportation, power, fuel and sheltering people," Goodwater said. "That's how we're standing by to help."
Copyright 1999 Los Angeles Times
-- Linkmeister (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 29, 1999
To the top.
-- Linkmeister (email@example.com), December 29, 1999.
Heh, if the FBI is in charge of the NG response to domestic terrorism, then we've already lost the fight IMHO. Ruby Ridge FBI is rumored to have taken the ammo away from the NG cause they were afraid the NG may actually try to protect the women and children, ah, I mean domestic terrorists.
Saddle-up boys, it's gonna be a lonnngggg ride!
-- Hokie (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 29, 1999.