Thursday, December 2

Bill proposed to improve response to floods in New York


Ombudsman Announces Bill to Improve New York Flood Response

Photo: Edwin Martínez / Impremedia

It has been more than a month and a half since the remnants of Hurricane Ida caused unfortunate tragedies in New York City, due to heavy downpours that claimed the lives of 13 people, most of them basement residents, and hundreds of families are still unable to fully get up.

And as a way to be better prepared for eventual future weather events, the Ombudsman, Jumaane Williams, presented a bill before the city ​​Council which aims to guarantee a more effective response to face flash floods.

The official’s legislative proposal will require the City to create and publish a detailed evacuation plan for flood emergencies, targeting multi-dwelling residents and creating a way for it to be widely disclosed, making such procedures known to all New Yorkers. .

Known like Intro 2347, which in addition to the Ombudsman is promoted by the councilor Carlina Rivera,
The piece of law warns of the need for the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) to collaborate with the Departments of Housing Preservation (HPD) and Environmental Protection (DEP) and to post signs about the evacuation plan in buildings.

Likewise, the implementation of the plans must be reported within 60 days, with data such as the number of multiple dwellings, basements, first-floor apartments evacuated during a flash flood emergency, addresses and municipal districts of evacuated dwellings. and number of people evacuated.

“Every time there is an extreme storm in the city, one that invades our systems and our streets, one that puts the safety of New Yorkers at risk, we hear that it is’ once in a decade, or once in a generation, or once every 500 years… ‘I’ve heard it once too often. These events are the new normal and we must be adequately prepared as a city, “he said. the Ombudsman. “This legislation will help ensure that New Yorkers are better prepared to evacuate and that the city is prepared to help them in the event of future flash floods. It is essential that not only are detailed plans in place, but that residents are aware of them, that the information is clear and consistent, and that the city is proactive in preventing future tragedies. “

Councilor Rivera warned, meanwhile, that climate change represents one of the most important threats to the city of New York and demanded the urgency of plans to improve the response to emergencies.

“New Yorkers desperately need comprehensive emergency response plans that protect us not if, but when, we face the next extreme weather disaster. The City’s commitments made earlier this year set a goal to complete the plan by 2023, but as these last few months have made it very clear, we simply don’t have that kind of time, ”said the political leader.

“We must continue to prioritize bold and urgent action to scale our resilience efforts and green infrastructure goals to combat the fatal impacts of the climate crisis … This is the kind of immediate action we need to keep our communities safe.” Rivera added.


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