As Puerto Rico and Florida continue to recover from widespread destruction caused by two recent hurricanes, federal agencies have launched a major effort to provide resources to battered areas.
The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season continues through November 30 and millions of Americans have been impacted by the massive floods in Texas (in August) and Central Appalachia (September) in Kentucky.
Recovery efforts are likely to continue for months, if not years, and disaster managers require the right tools including timely, accurate data to ensure an optimal coordinated response.
The U.S. Census Bureau provides timely local data critical to emergency planning, preparedness and recovery efforts.
Led by the White House and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the response to Hurricanes Fiona and Ian in September has mobilized resources from federal agencies, state, local and tribal governments, the private sector and nonprofit organizations.
The U.S. Census Bureau provides timely local data critical to emergency planning, preparedness and recovery efforts. In addition to hurricanes and floods, the Census Bureau provides data and emergency management resources for earthquakes, pandemics, tornadoes, wildfires, and winter storms.
Several of these tools offer easy access to vital information needed to respond to an emergency, such as identifying areas where vulnerable populations live. That includes people in poverty, the elderly, the disabled, those who may be living alone and non-English speakers.
Census Bureau data can also help identify the number and types of businesses in areas impacted by a disaster and how many jobs may be affected. High-frequency data such as the Small Business Pulse Survey and its successor, the Business Trends and Outlook Survey, can also inform emergency response through timely surveys that help gauge the impact of natural disasters on local businesses.
When major disasters strike, visit the Census Bureau's Emergency Management page to access demographic and economic data for the impacted areas.
You will also find critical tools including:
We have also published America Counts stories and posted a webinar with further information on Census Bureau data tools for disaster response and recovery:
As these efforts make clear, the Census Bureau has prioritized and is working hard to assist the nation when disasters strike.
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