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In the wake of Hurricane Hugo and the Loma Prieta Earthquake in 1989, the federal government developed a plan to guide future federal disaster response. The plan received final approval in April 1992, only four months before it would receive a full-scale test from Hurricane Andrew, which struck south Florida in August. Despite the plan, Andrew's landfall was attended by rampant confusion and miscommunication. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) bore the brunt of post-disaster criticism. FEMA's poor performance in the days following Andrew resulted in part from imperfections in the plan, which is overly bureaucratic and inflexible. To improve its emergency responsiveness the federal government must simplify the presidential disaster-declaration process, continue to bolster the federal response plan, and help local governments boost their own preparedness while making them aware that federal disaster response can take several days even under the best circumstances. -from Author


Journal article


Forum for Applied Reserch & Public Policy

Publication Date





26 - 29