Government Reform

Once More, with FEMA

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Mike "Brownie" Brown's past agency is still doing a heckuva job, says the AP. Trailers supplied by the Federal Emergency Management Agency literally stink–with the fumes of formaldehyde:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency came under new withering criticism Thursday after tests found dangerous levels of formaldehyde fumes in many of the trailers the agency used to house hurricane victims in Louisiana and Mississippi….

FEMA Administrator R. David Paulison said Thursday the agency would rush to find temporary housing for roughly 35,000 families now in its trailers. "We're moving as fast as we can," he said.

The agency was forced to act after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that formaldehyde fumes from hundreds of trailers and mobile homes were, on average, about five times what people are exposed to in most modern homes.

More here.

I've got no idea whether five times the fumes of "most modern homes" really means anything–I'm assuming the baseline in the latter is effectively zero. Or what health risks are associated with the formaldehyde. I do know that thousands more trailers have gone unused because FEMA didn't realize the ground they'd be on was too soft for such structures.

In the go-go world, where we eat standing up and are always on the run, looking to save time and do more, more, more in less time, can we agree to this: Let's start saying FEMA instead of SNAFU or FUBAR. We save a letter in each case, and it's clear that the one acronym will do the work of the two other words.