BP Needs New Disaster Head

Government officials and disaster experts are wondering why James Lee Witt was not called to help with the BP oil spill from the beginning. The ex-FEMA director is reportedly now working with two Florida counties on their response to the spill.

Last week, BP’s CEO Tony Hayward handed over the job of managing the disaster to Bob Dudley, a Mississippi native, who told a reporter he asked Witt to travel to New Orleans with him, wanting his feedback on BP’s response and any ideas for the future.

In an Associated Press article, Eileen Sullivan says FEMA received a lot of criticism for its lack of response to Hurricane Katrina, but “that reputation changed under Witt, partly because of the new image he brought to the agency.” George Haddow, who worked for Witt during the Clinton administration and is now a professor and researcher at George Washington University’s Institute of Crisis, Disaster and Risk Management, says “James Lee Witt knows a lot about how you communicate about disasters.” Others have said they are very surprised he has not been involved in the BP disaster.

To read the article, click here: