NOAA is an agency that enriches life through science. Our reach goes from the surface of the sun to the depths of the ocean floor as we work to keep the public informed of the changing environment around them.
The Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center (DRC) is an NOAA facility located in Mobile, Alabama, and establishes an unprecedented regional presence for the Gulf of Mexico region. Working under OR&R’s Disaster Preparedness Program, experts at the DRC use tools and science to advise decision-makers.
Over the past decade, the Gulf of Mexico has faced both natural and human-caused disasters, including hurricanes, oil spills, tornadoes, droughts, harmful algal blooms, and wildfires. While we cannot prevent these severe events, we can reduce their impacts. The need for timely and accurate information has never been greater. Recognizing this, OR&R continues to lead the way in the science of preparedness.
The DRC expands the federal capacity to plan for and respond to hazards of all types in the five states bordering the Gulf of Mexico. The facility is designed to survive up to Category 5 hurricane winds; contains a Force-5 tornado shelter, and has backup power systems to continue operations in the midst of severe weather. Intended to serve as a safe and ready command center during major disaster responses in the Gulf, the DRC also offers the facility for exercises, trainings, workshops, and other preparedness activities.
This facility brings together NOAA-wide resources to improve preparedness, planning, and response capacity for natural and human-caused disasters along the Gulf Coast. Dedicated in 2012, the DRC has since become the bedrock for NOAA’s Disaster Preparedness Program — a program that builds on the DRC’s existing operational capabilities and knowledge to ensure that commerce, communities, and natural resources can recover from disasters as quickly as possible.