Naval Station Roosevelt Roads in Ceiba, and is one of only five FEMA distribution centers in existence in the entire U.S., explained Alejandro De La Campa, FEMA Caribbean area division director, in an interview with CARIBBEAN BUSINESS.
"The new distribution center strengthens FEMA
's presence in the Caribbean long term, with better and more robust facilities to serve the population of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands," De La Campa
explained, adding FEMA has invested "millions" to rehabilitate the facility to the federal agency's strict standards.
At the distribution center, FEMA
stores some 100 large-capacity, 800-kilowatt electric power generators (to be used at critical, predetermined facilities such as hospitals); communications equipment for hooking up 100 phone lines and 50 computers via satellite; 500,000 civilian MREs (meals ready to eat); 300,000 bottles of water; thousands of tarps, blankets, cots and sheeting rolls; hundreds of chairs, tables and portable toilets; several temporary Joint Field Office kits; and much more.
"The facility is very modern and has the capacity to receive the additional resources we will be getting in the future," De La Campa
"It has a refrigerated section, and we even allocated some space to the American Red Cross
so it can store its provisions."
noted that since Hurricane Hugo in 1989, FEMA
has provided $3.3 billion in aid grants to Puerto Rico, for individual assistance, public assistance, mitigation programs and mission assignments.
CATASTROPHIC PLAN READY
After two years in the making, De La Campa
has completed a catastrophic-disaster response plan for Puerto Rico in the event the island faces a large-scale disaster- such as a high-magnitude earthquake and tsunami, or a category 4 or 5 hurricane-potentially affecting 400,000 people or more.
De La Campa
explained that during the plan's development, made at the request of Gov.
"What this means is that Puerto Rico is better prepared to respond to a large-scale catastrophe, because we have done the planning," De La Campa