• Study finds disaster survivors more prone to fatal mistakes

    A new study concludes that survivors of traumatic natural disasters may suffer from a decline in mental capabilities causing them to make grave errors in their daily lives

  • Apps, digital tools to help cope with disasters

    The Department of Health and Human Services has posted on its Web a list of apps and digital tools which would help individual cope with disasters and the challenges disasters pose

  • Florida blood service upgrades storage systems

    Florida Blood Services has replaced three disparate storage systems with the Nimble CS240 converged storage array; FBS says the new storage operation allows FBS more efficient and centralized storage for FBS’s headquarters and forty field offices

  • Tax breaks for disaster victims

    This year victims of natural disasters may be eligible for a generous break on their taxes

  • 2011 natural disasters cost U.S. insurers more than $32 billion

    2011 saw U.S. government set record for disaster declarations; the severity of the disasters set a record as well, with twelve separate billion-dollar weather/climate disasters in 2011, with an aggregate damage total of approximately $52 billion (this number reflects both insured and uninsured losses)

  • Building design lessons from the Christchurch earthquake

    A leading infrastructure expert believes an assessment needs to be made of the level of “very rare” earthquake that needs to be considered in structural design, perhaps one with a 10,000 year return period or higher, rather than the 500 year return period that is commonly adopted for many buildings in Australia

  • Turkish PM criticizes builders for unsafe practices

    Sunday’s 7.2 tremor in Turkey killed at least 460 people, injured 1,350, destroyed more than 2,000 buildings, and displaced thousands; Turkish prime minister harshly criticizes Turkish builders, saying negligence amounts to murder

  • USAID, Swiss Re Partnership Targets Hunger, Natural Disasters

    USAID and Swiss Re a few days ago announced a 3-year partnership to help vulnerable communities fight hunger, build resilience to climate change, and reduce the costs of natural disasters in the Americas, Africa, and Asia

  • Public-private partnership in homeland security

    The Homeland Security and Defense Business Council says that job of securing the U.S. homeland is an extensive and daunting mission that cannot be accomplished by government alone; it requires that the United States, collectively, become a resilient nation, with the capabilities needed to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against all threats

  • "Burying" FEMA in DHS was "huge structural and operational mistake"

    Homeland Security NewsWire’s executive editor Eugene K. Chow recently had the opportunity to interview Aden Hogan Jr., the city manager of Evans, Colorado and the former assistant city manager of Oklahoma City during the 1995 terrorist attack; in their interview, Hogan rates FEMA’s response during the recent spate of natural disasters in the United States, problems the agency has had since it became integrated in DHS, and steps that local governments and residents should be taking to better prepare themselves for major disasters

  • Safe, efficient cookstoves for earthquake survivors

    316,000 people were killed and more than one million made homeless by the 12 January 2010 magnitude 7.0 quake that left the capital city of Port-au-Prince in ruins; many of the displaced Haitians still live in tent cities, where even simple tasks such as cooking are a challenge; scientists hope to find the safest and most energy-efficient way for earthquake survivors to cook

  • Joplin recovers quickly, schools open on time

    In a show of resiliency and determination, schools in Joplin, Missouri opened on time last week less than ninety days after a devastating tornado leveled much of the town; the tornado’s 200 mile per hour winds tore through Joplin killing 160 people, destroying thousands of homes, and damaging ten schools while completely destroying four others, yet despite the destruction more than 90 percent of Joplin’s students returned to school on time as promised

  • Still too early to determine Joplin tornado recovery costs

    As Missouri recovers from the colossal tornado that leveled Joplin and the severe flooding in other parts of the state, cleanup efforts have been complicated by the lack of financial data on how much rebuilding will cost; state officials still do not have an exact figure for the costs of reconstruction

  • Napolitano addresses Public Private Partnership conference

    DHS secretary Janet Napolitano spoke to the attendees and reiterated the private sector’s role as an important partner in strengthening the homeland security enterprise better to defend against evolving threats, including disasters

  • Two Kiwi goldfish survive without food for more than four months

    Workers returning to a downtown office in Christchurch, New Zealand, discover goldfish alive in their tank at the office; the goldfish have not been fed since the February floods forced the evacuation of the town; fish expert theorize that bacteria kept the water in the tank clean, and that the fish ate algae which grew on rocks in the tank