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GOVERNMENT / THE ELITE -
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Ex-Fema boss starts disaster firm

Posted in the database on Friday, November 25th, 2005 @ 19:43:27 MST (1396 views)
from BBC News  

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Michael Brown resigned amid mounting criticism

The man who lost his job as head of the US response to Hurricane Katrina has started up a new firm - dealing with disaster readiness.

Michael Brown, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Fema), was forced to quit as anger at the crisis response grew.

He said he hopes his new consultancy will help others avoid a similar fate.

About 1,200 people were killed when New Orleans and the Gulf Coast were flooded following Hurricane Katrina in August.

Tens of thousands of families were forced out of their homes, and many have still not returned.

Mr Brown said his experience could be used to demonstrate how firms and agencies can better prepare themselves for unseen problems, and how to react when they arise.

Errors

"Hurricane Katrina showed how bad disasters can be, and there's an incredible need for individuals and businesses to understand how important preparedness is," he told the Rocky Mountain News.

He acknowledged mistakes had been made in the aftermath of Katrina, and said it was important to recognise the errors and learn from them.

Mr Brown was vilified for apparently being unaware of the chaos and lack of resources for thousands of refugees packed into New Orleans' convention centre, despite it being reported on national TV for hours beforehand.

He said the way he was criticised hurt, especially his family.

But he added: "I'm moving on with my life. I'm doing a lot of good work with some great clients... My wife, children and my grandchild still love me. My parents are still proud of me."



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