The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season officially started June 1. With the forecast for “above-normal” storm activity predicted, the two federal agencies most responsible for predicting weather and managing disasters face budget cuts and temporary bosses. In a statement on May 25, NOAA announced: “For the upcoming Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 through November 30, forecasters predict a 45 percent chance of an above-normal season, a 35 percent chance of a near-normal season, and only a 20 percent chance of a below-normal season.”
(Digital Journal/ Karen Graham) — Acting FEMA Administrator Robert J. Fenton, Jr. advised states and families in areas prone to storm surge and flooding to “Get ready now” by having supplies and evacuation routes prepared ahead of time. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are still leaderless, run by temporary bosses. Nearly five months into his presidency, Donald Trump has still not appointed anyone to head up NOAA. FEMA is not doing much better, although Trump has nominated the former head of Alabama’s emergency management agency, Brock Long, to the position. He should be confirmed as soon as next week, reports NPR.org.