In the wake of the partial collapse of a Surfside, Florida condo building Thursday, establishment media has been quick to denounce Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ seemingly slow response. Documents reveal that the blame should not fall at his feet.
The Washington Post’s Hannah Dreier posted to Twitter a FEMA report on the incident which came out during the morning hours of Thursday. It states that at that time, no requests for state for FEMA assistance had been made.
“FEMA was ready to deploy to the condo collapse almost immediately, and included the crisis in its daily briefing, but didn’t get permission from Gov. DeSantis to get on the ground for a full day,” wrote Dreier.
In order for state or FEMA assistance to be requested, a chain of command has to be followed. A Governor has to make the request for aid.
According to documents posted by Twitter user Jeremy, an emergency declaration chain of command has to be started by local government officials.
The mayor of Miami-Dade county, where the building is located, didn’t sign an emergency order until 4:33pm, over 12 hours after the building gave way. The incident at Champlain Towers South occurred at around 1:20am.
DeSantis signed an emergency declaration just shy of one hour later, at 5:32pm, which would provide assistance for the families impacted by the collapse as well as allow all necessary resources to be diverted to the area including law enforcement and other emergency personnel, the order said.
Despite her slow signing of an emergency declaration, Miami-made county mayor Daniella Levine Cava told Meet the Press that they were receiving plentiful assistance.
“We are very grateful. Not only the state of Florida has been here in force, but the President on the morning of the disaster called to offer all possible assistance, and by the end of that day we had FEMA approval. So we’re working super hard to get everything we need and we’ve not lacked for any support, as well as support from around the world,” stated Cava.