FEMA, FLASH announce resiliency initiative for Building Safety Month
TALLAHASSEE, FL May 1, 2017 In honor of Building Safety Month, the nonprofit Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH)® and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) today announced DisasterSmart – Leadership for a Resilient Future, an initiative designed for leaders seeking to enhance community resilience before and after natural disasters. The initiative provides commentary, video, and a resource library that outline the cost-benefits of smart building code practices, including life safety, insurance savings and heightened pre- and post-disaster relief eligibility.
DisasterSmart comes in the wake of accelerating human and economic disaster losses across the United States as well as mounting economic evidence that validates building codes and beyond-code construction practices as essential to increase public safety, shorten recovery time, and reduce the economic impacts of natural disasters. In addition to building code case studies, the effort highlights resilience policy fundamentals; incentive-aligned relief programs; public-private partnerships; and smart disaster finance. The resources support a leadership path to increased public safety, more disaster-resistant structures, and preservation of a community's workforce after a disaster.
"We cannot eliminate the disaster risk that all communities face, but we can reduce the disaster consequences through resilience leadership," said FLASH President and CEO Leslie Chapman-Henderson. "DisasterSmart aggregates information, best practices, and proven tools to help leaders prioritize disaster resilience and do everything in their power to protect citizens and communities before disasters strike."
Lessons learned from natural disasters demonstrate that having proactive policies in place before earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, and other natural disasters strike help to save lives, decrease financial losses, and ensure that communities bounce back swiftly following an event. Action ahead of a disaster can mitigate secondary impacts such as fires, power outages, transportation interruptions, and water contamination as well.
The nonprofit Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) is the country's leading consumer advocate for strengthening homes and safeguarding families from natural and manmade disasters. The FLASH partnership includes more than 120 innovative and diverse organizations that share a vision of making America a more disaster-resilient nation including: BASF, FEMA, Florida Division of Emergency Management, The Home Depot®, Huber Engineered Woods, International Code Council, Kohler® Generators, National Weather Service, Portland Cement Association, Simpson Strong-Tie®, State Farm®, and USAA®. In 2008, FLASH® and Disney opened the interactive weather experience StormStruck: A Tale of Two Homes® in Lake Buena Vista, FL. Learn more about FLASH and access free consumer resources by visiting www.flash.org, calling toll-free (877) 221- SAFE (7233), following @federalalliance on Twitter, Facebook.com/federalalliance, and the FLASH blog – Protect Your Home in a FLASH.