NYC storm: Who you gonna call?


When a storm threatens NYC, what happens? Apparently, very little.

No details were available from the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) headed by the non-responding Commissioner Emily Lloyd. No one in the DEP agency was available for specific information (starting on Friday, September 5, 2008). Even Public Affairs director Michael Saucier and Deputy Commissioner James Roberts, who directs the Bureau of Water & Sewer Operations, did not return phone calls. I was trying to find out the number of trucks and crew members who were out and about cleaning sewers of cement, twigs and leaves. No one in DEP had information (to share?).

The Office of Emergency Management is not much better, although I did speak with Chris Gilbride, after he stopped yelling at me for a voice mail message he found offensive. It appears that OEM is opening its Brooklyn office on Saturday so that all the responsible agencies can have a representative in the same place at the same time.

I did try to determine the cost of the 2007 FEMA declared disaster in New York and the anticipated cost of the September 2008 storm. This information is not currently available from the OEM office. (I have to submit really hard questions like these in writing.)

So, after spending 6 hours running after NYC government agencies responsible for protecting New Yorkers and visitors during storms, what did I find out? Nothing!

Here we have it, when bad weather heads for New York, government leadership heads for meetings.