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Brussels, 30 October 2012
Statement by Kristalina Georgieva, European Union Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response on the effects of Hurricane Sandy
I am following with concern the devastating passage of Hurricane Sandy through the states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Virginia in the United States. I am saddened by the death and damage that the storm is causing on its path. My condolences to the American people and especially the families of those who lost their lives in this disaster.
The EU Monitoring and Information Centre continues to monitor the evolution of the hurricane. The Commission's experts in civil protection are in regular contact with FEMA, the US Federal Emergency Management Agency. I want to commend FEMA on their great work on disaster response together with the other federal, local, state authorities, relief organisations and volunteers. Their reaction to Hurricane Sandy is showing once again the merit of appropriate preparedness measures and the importance of early warning systems and pre-established disaster management plans.
Hurricane Sandy is yet another example of the increasing intensity and frequency of natural disasters to which even the best prepared are not immune. It's also yet another reason for us all to work on preparedness and better disaster response. The European Commission's proposal for upgrading the EU Civil Protection Mechanism aims precisely at strengthening the European preparedness and response capacity in the face of large disasters.