The Roles of the Local, State, and Local Government during Flooding

While local and state entities are the primary responders to flooding incidences, the federal government also plays a significant role during these catastrophic events. The South Florida flooding scenario, for instance, requires quick and efficient response activities, including rescue, evacuation, taking care of the injured, and provision of food and shelter among other needs. Local governments are usually the first responders to emergencies and disasters (A Citizen’s Guide to Disaster Assistance, n.d.). In the scenario in question, the local government will instantly send fire and police units, rescue agencies, and emergency medical personnel to the affected areas to offer the required assistance (A Citizen’s Guide to Disaster Assistance, n.d.).

Debris removal will start immediately to facilitate water movement. All the units at the scene will work collaboratively to provide vital services such as communications, clean water and food, power, transportation, medical attention, and shelter (A Citizen’s Guide to Disaster Assistance, n.d.). Due to the magnitude of the South Florida flooding, the local government will require the support of the state agencies. The local government will send reports that will paint the real picture of the flooding event, including casualties, property damages, and affected locations, to the state.

Once the state receives information about the emergency, the governor’s staff analyzes the situation to determine what type of services are required. Personnel and resources are then deployed to the affected areas, consistent with the state plan. State agencies can help in inspecting the situation to determine the possibility of water contamination or chemical leakage among other services (U.S. Department of Transportation, n.d.). With over 750,000 structures destroyed and the anticipated 22 days of flooding, the federal’s support will be required to provide more resources. Federal agencies can respond to the call by providing direct assistance, including evacuations (Carter, 2012). The national bodies such as FEMA, NRCS, and NFIP can work collaboratively to offer long-term support such as hazard mitigation and construction of coastal dunes, levees, and floodwalls (Carter, 2012).




A Citizen’s Guide to Disaster Assistance. (n.d.). How Communities Deal with Emergencies and Disasters. FEMA Training. Unit Two. Retrieved from

Carter, N.T. (2012, Oct 31). Federal Involvement in Flood Response and Flood Infrastructure Repair: Storm Sandy Recovery. Congressional Research Service. Retrieved from

U.S. Department of Transportation. (n.d.). Federal, State, Local, and Transportation Roles in Evacuations. U.S. Department of Transportation. Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved from