GOHSEP

npr.org

Is Louisiana ready to respond to a tragedy like the one in Las Vegas? According to Mike Steele with the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, they’re as ready as anyone can be for a horrific event such as this.

He says state and local first responders practice for situations like this all the time.

Hurricane Katrina, as pictured in the Gulf of Mexico at 14:45 UTC on August 28, 2005.
NOAA

Don’t you love your smart phone, giving you information and instantaneous communication in the palm of your hand? But what if cell service, power and internet weren’t there? Remember Katrina?

“Then you have your response, which, if you remember, uh, didn’t go real well,” Kevin Davis, head of the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP), said, in a masterpiece of understatement. “It was a huge disaster,” he added, quite frankly.


GOHSEP, Guard Adjust After $15M of Ice Wasted

Aug 9, 2013
Bags of ice ordered for Hurricane Isaac melting in a Lacombe, La. warehouse.
Louisiana Inspector General

As Hurricane Isaac was bearing down on Louisiana last August, the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness bought 773 truckloads of bagged ice from Pelican Ice in Kenner for $17.4 million.

Only $2.4 million worth actually got distributed by the Louisiana National Guard to the public.

Some was given away for free to restaurants and other private businesses. One retailer even repackaged and sold some.

Nearly half of the ice was allowed to melt in an un-refrigerated warehouse in Lacombe.

Last week, the state Inspector General issued a scathing report about the blunder.

GOHSEP spokesman Mike Steele and the Guard’s public affairs officer Lt. Col. Michael Kazmierzak say they have revised supplier contracts and improved tracking to prevent so much ice from going to waste again.