(JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, AK) – Governor Mike Dunleavy issued a disaster declaration for the 2022 September storm currently impacting the west coast of Alaska. The disaster declaration activates the State Emergency Operations Plan, bringing together a statewide coordinated response to communities impacted by this record storm.
Extreme winds and coastal sea surge have impacted numerous communities. The State Emergency Operation Center (SEOC) has received multiple reports of flooded homes, roads and airports, along with power outages and infrastructure damage. Communities, having activated their emergency response plans prior to the storm, took steps to prepare. They are now actively engaged in response operations, including sheltering support for displaced residents.
“The storm hitting the coastal regions of western Alaska is unprecedented, and I want every Alaskan impacted by the storm to know that the State is working around the clock to protect Alaskans, and once the storm passes, to rebuild essential infrastructure and make our coastal communities whole again,” said Governor Dunleavy.
“Alaska will see the peak of this storm this evening, and the full impact of this storm will not be known for several days, but the State of Alaska is committed to seeing that affected Alaskans receive the emergency assistance and recovery support they need,” said DMVA Commissioner Torrence Saxe. “All of our response partners began preparations to help when they saw the storm forecast and are now working to support the needs of local communities in this disaster.”
The SEOC, in coordination with municipal, tribal, and Borough Incident Commands, is working with a full range of volunteer, private-sector, tribal, state, and federal government emergency response partners to provide needed resources and disaster support. This includes the Red Cross, Salvation Army, Calista Corporation, Bering Strait Native Corporation, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation, Association of Village Council Presidents, Samaritan’s Purse, United States Coast Guard, United States Army Corps of Engineers, Civil Air Patrol, Alaska National Guard, and Federal Emergency Management Agency. At this time SEOC has not received any reports of injuries or fatalities.
“The National Weather Service was able to give early warning of this storm and fully notified communities in the path,” said Bryan Fisher, Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. “Local and tribal governments activated their emergency response plans and did what was necessary to protect their community members. These steps have been instrumental in preventing injury and loss of life and have minimized damage to property.”