WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly today to confirm Brock Long as head of FEMA, three weeks into hurricane season and a day before Tropical Storm Cindy is expected to make landfall along the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coasts.
The Hill reports that senators voted 95-4 to approve Long, who formerly served as the head of Alabama’s Emergency Management Agency between 2008 and 2011.
In that role, he was the incident commander for Alabama during the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Currently, he’s vice president of Hagerty Consulting, a private emergency management firm in Illinois.
Forbes had this to say about the new head of FEMA:
He has experience with major disaster challenges and has also has worked as a FEMA Regional Hurricane Planner and Response Team Leader. Long has also testified to Congress on effective recovery from catastrophic events. During his tenure in my state, he served as the Georgia Emergency Management Agency’s Statewide Planner/School Safety Coordinator.
Long’s selection comes just as the Gulf Coast prepares for a heavy rain event, with flash flooding and coastal flooding likely.
The National Hurricane Center predicts up to 12 inches of rain in some parts of South Louisiana. Any high winds associated with the storm are expected to hit to the west of New Orleans.