FEMA records hits, emotions
- By Dibya Sarkar
- Sep 14, 2001
Message from FEMA Director Joe Allbaugh
The Federal Emergency Management Agency's Web site set a record for Web
usage with more than 3.4 million hits Sept. 12the day after terrorists
struck the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
The site (www.fema.gov) is providing users with news,
links, and phone numbers related to disaster relief and recovery in Manhattan
and near Washington, D.C.
The previous record of 3 million hits was recorded Sept. 16, 1999, when
Hurricane Floyd hit the coast of North Carolina, said Marc Wolfson, a FEMA
In response to a huge outpouring of sympathy, the agency created a separate
e-mail account where people can send comments about the tragedies. A message
from FEMA Director Joe Allbaugh describes the effort to "provide a forum
for these emotions," and the messages have been posted at www.fema.gov/nwz01/nwz01_98a1.htm.
Holly Harrington, a FEMA spokeswoman who also manages the FEMA for Kids
site, said she hatched the idea Sept. 12 when she received an e-mail message
from someone in Australia expressing condolences.
So far, the section, which has not been publicized, has posted about 100
of the e-mail messages that have been received. Harrington screens the messages
before they are posted.
She said the response from around the world has been "unbelievable." Aside
from the United States, people from Canada, England, Australia, France,
Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Singapore, Slovenia and Taiwan have sent messages.
"People seemed real thrilled to have an avenue to express themselves," she
Users can send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Harrington also said the "FEMA for Kids" site (www.fema.gov/kids) has updated resources and information for parents and
teachers on how to talk to kids about the tragedies. She said the additions
are in response to the "tremendous amount of e-mails" from parents requesting