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Hurricane Sandy Debris Removal and Emergency Management


Hurricane Sandy caused unprecedented damage to the Borough of Rumson, New Jersey due to flooding, power outages, and downed trees. While borough personnel engaged in emergency street clearing, assisting citizens, distributing supplies, and operating temporary pump stations, they wanted to complete recovery operations as quickly as possible. Additionally, local officials wanted to ensure that work would be reimbursed by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to the greatest extent possible. Within days of the storm’s passing, the borough contracted APTIM for debris removal management and operations, including Private Property Debris Removal (PPDR).

Our Approach

  • Debris management planning and monitoring plan implementation
  • Emergency response to a federally declared disaster
  • Close coordination with FEMA and other state and local governments and agencies

APTIM managed the debris removal process and coordinated all PPDR operations among the various contractors and borough personnel in accordance with FEMA PPDR guidelines. Our personnel developed a database tracking debris tickets, monitoring debris disposal, providing field personnel to monitor debris disposal, and assisted with training borough personnel who performed the majority of field monitoring work.

Our experienced personnel guided the borough through the complicated issues related to debris removal operations and FEMA reimbursement. We consulted with the borough administrator to develop contracts with debris removal contractors acceptable under FEMA guidelines. This involved hiring a state-approved debris contractor at a set rate per cubic yard and changing the other debris contractors working for the borough from time and materials contracts to unit price.

To save money and provide the best service to the client, our personnel returned to their home locations within two weeks of operations beginning. By this time, their efforts to train borough personnel and coordinate with the debris contractors paid off with operations running smoothly and efficiently. We continued to provide support to the borough by compiling daily reports, tracking, ticket imaging, and consultation.

The Outcome

We assisted the borough in completing a majority of debris removal operations while many other communities were struggling to begin removal operations. In all, we managed removal operations for 100,000+ cubic yards and 2,000+ tons of debris. We kept costs below average due to innovative cooperation between APTIM and borough personnel, who provided most of the field monitoring. We completed the project with zero lost time or other safety related issues

APTIM. Expect the Extraordinary.

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