specify what assistance they could expect from FEMA and when it might be 
available.  Confused, the victims called National Processing Service Center 
representatives for clarification.  This created additional burdens as the Center 
was already overloaded with increased workloads, high call volumes, and 
slow and crashing systems. 
Reporting Challenges 
Response and recovery program personnel said that some FEMA systems did 
not provide useful reports regarding ongoing operations.  They said that the 
standard reports that NEMIS and IFMIS generated were long and did not 
contain specific information, in the right format, to meet their needs.  For 
example, when a grant report is requested from IFMIS, the product includes 
all grants instead of identifying specific grant information.  Because the 
reports provided were not useful, FEMA regional offices copied data from the 
systems and loaded it into spreadsheets and databases so that they could create 
their own reports.  The spreadsheets and databases were not standardized 
across all regional offices, were not connected with the response and recovery 
systems, and were not centrally backed up.  As a result, regional offices did 
not maintain consistent information that could be rolled up to the national 
In addition, requested reports were not timely.  At one point in the Florida 
operations, Individual Assistance Program personnel received a report six 
days after it had been requested.  As a result, 200 300 disaster assistance 
employees were hindered in their efforts to assist more than 200,000 disaster 
victims who had requested temporary housing assistance.  Without the reports 
to provide the names and contact information of eligible victims, FEMA was 
delayed in locating victims to deliver assistance.  Other system users said that 
IFMIS reports take so long to run that they regularly leave the system on over 
night to produce them.  Alternatively, users copy system information, such as 
financial transaction data, mission assignments, vendor information, and 
action tracking request forms, onto spreadsheets or databases to access and 
manipulate the needed data more easily. 
Real Time Resource Tracking Issues 
During the 2004 hurricanes, FEMA systems did not provide staff with real 
time capabilities for tracking deployments of personnel, equipment, and 
supplies.  For example, ADD did not allow FEMA regional staff
to keep track 
of emergency response personnel sent out to provide assistance at disaster 
locations.  Although ADD contained much of the personnel deployment 
Emergency Preparedness and Response Could Better Integrate Information Technology  
with Incident Response and Recovery 
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