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FEMA envisions base camps in Puerto Rico or Virgin Islands for its emergency responders

A FEMA responder
base camp

FEMA is gathering information from prospective vendors who could help the agency in case of an emergency in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands by quickly establishing two large “responder support camps” (which could house 11 to 3,000 occupants) and well as five smaller and more “remote camps” (which could accommodate 25 to 100 occupants.)

FEMA has asked potential vendors to answer a series of questions, as part of a Request for Information (RFI) it issued on December 19, which provide a pretty good idea of what kinds of camps FEMA has in mind.

Based on the queries it poses, FEMA apparently wants any future contractors to be able to transport equipment, set up, and make the camps operational within 72 hours of being notified. FEMA wants all camps staffed on a 24/7 basis.

“Does the contractor have the ability to clear an unimproved area, grade the area to prevent pooling of water but maintain level areas to construct the camp?” asks the agency.

FEMA appears to want its camps to have a medical service with a dedicated area and on-site nurses. In addition, FEMA wants a continually staffed kitchen, eating area for at least 60 percent of the occupants at one time, including a “dietary plan comparable to the military’s 14 day menu.”

The vendor must also be able to supply power, fuel, food, water, ablution, solid and black and grey water removal, as well as maintenance, the RFI explains.

Also, the camps should have “multiple buildings that can be connected by covered walk-ways,” laundry services, and workstations for 25 percent of the camp occupants, with access to the Internet.

Vendors with the capability to establish and operate such responder base camps in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have until February 3, 2014 to describe those capabilities to FEMA.

Additional information about this requirement is available from Dennis Clements, a contracting officer, at