Winter Preparedness Tips: Staying Safe in a Winter Wonderland

Posted Tue, 01/19/2021 - 13:48
By Savannah Turner, NOAA Office of Response and Restoration

No matter how technologically advanced we become, or how accurate our weather forecast models are, mother nature maintains the ability to quickly remind us of how little control we have over her. Winters are notorious for impacting those who underestimate seasonal hazards or fail to prepare. For every extreme winter story of the skiers, climbers, or Arctic explorers who surmounted incredible odds to survive, there exists a counter narrative of the Captain Oates of the world—the intrepid explorer who died during the Terra Nova Antarctic expedition, sacrificing himself so that others could survive.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day: ‘Make it A Day On, Not a Day Off’

Posted Sun, 01/17/2021 - 22:45
By Kristen Faiferlick, NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration

Today, we celebrate the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. Though he is most known for his fight against racism, King once said “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The third Monday in January of each year marks the passing of King’s birthday—Jan. 15—but it’s also the only federal holiday identified as a national day of service. This designation encourages all Americans to volunteer in their communities, address societal challenges, and connect to the life and teachings of Martin Luther King Jr. 

Incident Responses for December 2020

Posted Tue, 01/12/2021 - 13:43

Every month our Emergency Response Division provides scientific expertise and services to the U.S. Coast Guard on everything from running oil spill trajectories to model where the spill may spread, to possible effects on wildlife and fisheries and estimates on how long the oil may stay in the environment. This month OR&R responded to 14 incidents, including oil discharges, grounded vessels, and other pollution-related incidents. 

2020 By the Numbers: Looking Back on this Year’s Incidents

Posted Thu, 12/31/2020 - 14:36
By Doug Helton, Office of Response and Restoration Emergency Response Division

It’s almost the end of the year and time to reflect on events. What a year, from the pandemic and teleworking, to political events and protests and social change, to wildfires and a record hurricane season. The “normal” emergency response activities that NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration deals with on a regular basis still took place, but under the unrelenting pressure of a challenging year for all. 

Facility Improvements Enhance Operation and Function at the NOAA Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center

Posted Tue, 12/22/2020 - 18:03
By Jessica White, Office of Response and Restoration Disaster Preparedness Program

The NOAA Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center, operated by the Office of Response and Restoration, is a multi-purpose facility located in Mobile, Alabama, which serves NOAA and our partners to enhance preparedness for and support response to all hazards. Established in 2012, the center is strategically equipped with office space, a large space for emergency operations or training events, conference rooms, break out rooms, a lactation room, showers, a loading dock/receiving area, and boat barn. These spaces are built to withstand up to Category 5 hurricane winds and are wired to maintain internet access and power during and after a disaster. 

Incident Responses for November 2020

Posted Tue, 12/15/2020 - 13:44

Every month our Emergency Response Division provides scientific expertise and services to the U.S. Coast Guard on everything from running oil spill trajectories to model where the spill may spread, to possible effects on wildlife and fisheries and estimates on how long the oil may stay in the environment. This month OR&R responded to 11 incidents, including oil discharges, grounded vessels, and other pollution-related incidents. Here are some of November's notable incidents ... 

Responding to a Mystery Spill on Broadkill Beach, Delaware

Posted Thu, 12/03/2020 - 15:05
By Frank Csulak, Office of Response and Restoration

On a relatively quiet afternoon on Oct. 19, 2020, the U.S. Coast Guard notified NOAA’s Frank Csulak that tar balls and oiled debris were scattered across approximately 12 miles of Delaware Bay’s shoreline. As the scientific support coordinator for the Mid-Atlantic Region in NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration, Frank is used to such calls and began working with his team on the trajectory, weather, and tidal information.