EPA Hurricane Irma Update – Sept 15, 5:00 p.m. EST
ALWAYS CALL 911 if you are in immediate danger and need emergency help.
For information about Irma recovery in Puerto Rico, please contact:
• Puerto Rico Emergency Management and Disaster Administration Agency (AEMEAD): 787-724-0124
For information about Irma recovery in the U.S. Virgin Islands, please contact:
• Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA): 340-774-2244
To report suspected spills, contamination or possible violations:
• To report oil, chemical, or hazardous substance releases or spills, call the National Response Center 1-800-424-8802 (24 hours a day every day). For those without 800 access, please call 202-267-2675.
• Report a suspected environmental violation on EPA's reporting page.
For general questions about EPA’s response in Region 2, please call 1-888-283-7626 during regular business hours.
For general questions about EPA’s response in Region 4, please call 1-800-241-1754 during regular business hours.
Media inquiries should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
EPA has two regional operations centers working on recovery to Hurricane Irma. In general, EPA’s response activities include assessing critical infrastructure like wastewater and drinking water treatment plants; assessing any damage done to Superfund Hazardous waste sites and other regulated facilities as well as other cleanup activities that are needed to support FEMA and the overall response. The Agency is focused on the safety of those in the affected areas and warns that unauthorized entry at any Superfund site, either prior to or following the storm, is prohibited as these sites can be extremely dangerous and can pose significant threats to human health.
EPA Region 4 is coordinating with state agencies in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Emergency response staff, including On-Scene Coordinators, are working on regional assessment and response deployment activities, coordinating with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Coast Guard, (USCG) and FEMA, including assessing drinking water and wastewater infrastructure, facility assessment, and managing debris and household hazardous waste. EPA regional facility assessment teams have assessed more than 200 targeted facilities, within 23 counties in Florida, identified by the Florida Emergency Operations Center Oil and Hazardous Materials Response desk and assigned to EPA, as well as other facilities EPA identified. The Region 4 Superfund Division deployed six Rapid Assessment Teams to conduct rapid assessments of all National Priority List (NPL) sites in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina.
EPA Region 2 has teams that began working on assessment and response activities in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Beginning on September 18, 2017, however, operations in the islands shifted from response to Irma to preparedness for the incoming Hurricane Maria. Responding teams have been re-positioned until after the storm is over, when the situation will be re-assessed. EPA is prepared to continue response activities to both Irma and Maria in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands following Maria.
EPA has developed a number of fact sheets in English and Spanish that provide helpful information about EPA’s role in hurricane response. In addition, the EPA has important information about how to safely begin recovery from a hurricane. EPA has informational pamphlets in English and Spanish about cleaning up after a flood. For general advice and tips and information about preparedness and recovery, visit FEMA’s Irma web page.