Domestic Disaster Response & Preparedness
Photo: Craig Thompson, Disciple Design
Earthquakes, Puerto Rico
Tropical Storm Imelda, Texas
Hurricane Dorian, Bahamas and Atlantic Coast
Flooding, Oklahoma and Midwest US
Hurricane Michael, Florida
Hurricane Florence, North Carolina
Carr Fire and Camp Fire, California
Hurricanes Irma & Maria, Puerto Rico
Hurricane Irma, Florida
Hurricane Harvey, Texas
Week of Compassion is in conversation with local churches and partners in these areas where disasters are ongoing or have recently occurred. As needs are emerging, we are assessing potential avenues for response.
Throughout the spring and summer of 2019, several bouts of rapid snowmelt and heavy rain caused multiple and recurring flood events across Oklahoma, Nebraska, Missouri, and elsewhere in the Midwest. Thousands of buildings, homes, and farms were inundated with water, ice, and mud.
Event Summary: On December 1, 2018 an EF3 tornado hit Taylorville, IL, damaging nearly than 700 homes. Many of those homes were in middle- and low-income areas of the rural town.
Hurricane Michael intensified rapidly in the Gulf of Mexico before making landfall along the Florida panhandle as a Category 4 storm on Oct. 10, 2018. The most severe damage occurred in 12 counties in the panhandle, but high winds and heavy rain resulted in downed trees, structural damage, and flooding across several other counties in Florida, Alabama, and Georgia.
On September 14, 2018, Hurricane Florence made landfall along the North Carolina coast, just north of the border between the Carolinas. For the next several days, the storm lingered over the region, causing catastrophic flooding, including prolonged significant river flooding. The federal disaster declaration included 34 counties, the majority of which were also in the impact zone of Hurricane Matthew just two years before.
Between July 23 and August 30, 2018, the Carr Fire burned 229,651 acres in the area in and around Redding, CA. Damage assessments estimate the fire damaged or destroyed nearly 2000 structures, including more than 1200 homes. Unusually heavy rains and even a rare heavy snowfall through the fall and winter caused additional challenges for the many people living in temporary shelter, including some still living in tents or on the streets.
Another catastrophic fire broke out in the region on Nov. 8, 2018, in Butte County. Over the next 3 weeks, the fire consumed 153,336 acres, including most of the town of Paradise, and resulting in 85 confirmed fatalities. At least 52,000 people were evacuated, and more than 14,000 homes were severely damaged or destroyed. Just weeks after the fire, heavy rains in the burn scar area caused flash flooding and mudslides, prompting additional evacuations, causing more damage, and slowing the debris removal process.
On July 19, 2018, a tornado outbreak occurred northeast of Des Moines, IA. Among the recorded tornadoes were an EF2 in Bondurant, which damaged several dozen homes, and an EF3 in Marshalltown, which damaged more than 1000 homes as well as multiple manufacturing plants and a downtown business district. Damage to the manufacturing plants in Marshalltown resulted in temporary and long-term unemployment for many residents in the area, including many who also experienced damage at their homes.
On September 10, 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall as a Category 4 storm in the Florida Keys before moving up the spine of the peninsula. Nearly 2.5 million households in Florida registered for assistance with FEMA, many of whom had also suffered damage during Hurricane Matthew just 11 months before.