The Mitigation Unit coordinates and administers statewide floodplain management, hazard mitigation planning and project programs. Personnel in the Mitigation Unit can assist with the identification and promotion of structural and non-structural mitigation practices in an effort to reduce the short and long-term adverse impacts of natural hazard events. Unit personnel provide technical assistance throughout the entire mitigation project life from assisting with the identification of viable projects that will alleviate future damages, through providing oversight of the development of a project application ensuring compliance with program policy and professional design standards, to conducting site visits during construction to ensure all approved project plans are being followed through a final project inspection.
WHAT'S NEW IN MITIGATION IN NEW MEXICO?
Silver Jackets New Mexico was formed to raise awareness of flood risks in NM Tribal communities. Silver Jackets NM is a collaboration between the US Army Corps of Engineers, FEMA Region VI and NM – Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. Through establishment of the Tribal Flood Risk Workgroup, the team addresses New Mexico's most vulnerable communities – those along the Rio Grande River basin. The team has had meetings and have addressed dam inundation, dam warning systems, hazard / risk analysis, and flood insurance. Silver Jackets – NM has had guest speakers from FEMA Region VI, Wendy Phillips, Earthquake Program Manager and James Orwat, Engineer / Flood Map specialist. The newest member to join the Silver Jackets was the National Weather Service – Albuquerque. Download the Silver Jackets Quarterly Newsletter
FEMA EARTHQUAKE ASSISTANCE
FEMA has supported two earthquake focused programs in NM. In 2009, the Earthquake Hazards Reduction State Assistance Program has awarded funds to develop EQ awareness through workshops in Spanish. Terramotos-NM has been initiated by following the lead of seismic experts at New Mexico Tech (NMT) Seismological Observatory who suggested DHSEM provide outreach to a vulnerable population.
In 2010, the EHRSAP has awarded funding in order to support students at NMT who will develop an earthquake model. The students worked with County Emergency Managers along the Rio Grande Rift to locate via GPS essential facilities – the Civil Engineering / Geology / Architecture students have also completed FEMA’s Rapid Visual Screening of Buildings for Potential Seismic Hazards which has provided an evaluation of seismic risk. This is available on a digital and hard-copy maps for County use.
Evaluating the Seismic Preparedness of New Mexico
Contact Wendy Blackwell the DHSEM State Hazard Mitigation Officer at 505-476-9676 or send an email to DHSEM.Mitigation@state.nm.us if you have additional questions.