Governor Dunleavy Concludes Journeys to Areas Affected by the September 2022 Western Alaska Storm – Mike Dunleavy

September 23, 2022

Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy returned Wednesday from a three-day journey to communities closely impacted by the Western Alaska storm, the remnants of Storm Merbok.

“I’m actually grateful for each Alaskan who stepped in to assist their neighbors in a time of want,” mentioned Governor Dunleavy. “I recognize all the assist from people, FEMA, Coast Guard, Tribal entities, Native firms, Pink Cross, Salvation Military, the State Emergency Operations Heart employees, and so many extra. The State is grateful for our companions and group leaders who helped defend lives earlier than, throughout, and after the storm. Fortunately, there are nonetheless no reported accidents or deaths at the moment. As soon as the federal catastrophe declaration is authorised, that can help in reimbursements and extra assets for long-term restoration.”

Governor Dunleavy and his group, together with Alaska Division of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Ryan Anderson, and the Alaska Division of Army and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), Maj. Gen. Torrence Saxe, visited Bethel, Scammon Bay, Hooper Bay, Newtok, Nome, Golovin, Elim, and Koyuk.

“This journey has been important to understanding the scope of the harm throughout Western Alaskan communities and appearing to correctly assist the trouble,” mentioned Maj. Gen. Saxe. “Our deployed power of greater than 130 service members based mostly out of Bethel and Nome are targeted on getting out to those communities and sustaining the restoration course of.”

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“The storm surge and excessive winds final weekend broken private property, ingesting water techniques, airport climate tools, gasoline tanks, and each native and state roads,” mentioned Commissioner Anderson. “Our upkeep employees and airport contractors went to work earlier than the winds died down—eradicating particles from our airports and roads and repairing our airport lighting techniques. Now we’re bringing in inspectors, contractors, and development groups to get the toughest hit roadways reopened and in good situations earlier than it will get colder. We’re additionally working with the native communities to attach them with the state and federal assets they should restore their native roads.”

 

Over the previous few days, the World Kitchen delivered 1000’s of kilos of meals and water to communities with essentially the most harm, reminiscent of Golovin and Hooper Bay. The State has now recognized 89 residences thus far with extreme impacts all through the communities. The data on submitting for Particular person Public Help can be launched tomorrow, detailing the way to apply and the place to use. As well as, the Federal Emergency Administration Company (FEMA)’s Administrator Deanne Criswell is arriving tomorrow to tour the world and examine the harm.

Over 120 personnel from the Nationwide Guard, Alaska State Protection Power, and Alaska Naval Militia Alaska are on orders for catastrophe response. They’re deploying army plane to Bethel and Nome; then to native communities to help with supplies for quick emergency short-term residential restore and storm particles cleanup.

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Previous to landfall, the State Emergency Operation Heart hosted Storm Merbok convention calls with the Pribilof Island, Seward Peninsula, Yukon Kuskokwim Delta, and Northwest Arctic Borough communities to offer warnings and urge preparedness. Based mostly on preliminary experiences early Saturday morning, September 17, Governor Dunleavy declared a State catastrophe emergency for communities impacted by the storm on the recommendation of Director Bryan Fisher. On September 20th, Governor Dunleavy requested a federal catastrophe declaration for the storm. Governor Dunleavy additionally submitted a legislative notification to request concurrence to extend the funding limitation to $10 million from the Catastrophe Reduction Fund.

Different Main State Company Responses:

  • Alaska Division of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is engaged on experiences of native contaminant spills and water/wastewater points. DEC can also be evaluating group water techniques within the storm influence space and is publishing boil water notices as acceptable.
  • United States Coast Guard (USCG) continues to survey environmental impacts within the storm space and has a prepared response for Search and Rescue. USCG experiences that storm impacts haven’t impacted west coast communities from receiving bulk gasoline deliveries with over-the-shore “delicate hose” supply out there when a coastal gasoline header is inoperable.
  • Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys is within the storm influence space gathering high-water marks to document and calibrate the storm’s historic influence.
  • Alaska DOT has reopened all airports within the storm influence space and is actively working to restore roads and state services. Crews checked the Security Sound bridge on the Nome-Council Street and decided the bridge is unbroken, although components of the highway are washed out.
  • United States Military Corps of Engineers (USACE) have checked the Port in Nome, and there are not any points. USACE Engineers are evaluating the Nome Seawall and Shishmaref Financial institution Safety tasks.
  • Division of Homeland Safety & Emergency Administration (DHS&EM) launched an internet site that homes something associated to the storm, alaska.gov/Storm.
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Click on right here to view the Legislative Notification despatched to Senate President Peter Micciche and Speaker of the Home Louise Stutes.

Click on right here to view the Federal Catastrophe Declaration request.

View extra images from the journey right here.