FEMA Looks to Waffle House for Data

Craig Fugate, the current head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), knows a few things about how to assess damage in a disaster area. There's hard data, and then there's a sense of how things are, developed by experience.
First, there is the well-known Saffir-Simpson Wind Scale. Then there is what he calls the "Waffle House Index."

Green means the restaurant is serving a full menu, a signal that damage in an area is limited and the lights are on. Yellow means a limited menu, indicating power from a generator, at best, and low food supplies. Red means the restaurant is closed, a sign of severe damage in the area or unsafe conditions.

"If you get there and the Waffle House is closed?" FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate has said. "That's really bad. That's where you go to work."

There are 1,600 Waffle House outlets across the USA, and the franchise policy is to try their best to feed customers even when conditions are difficult. Link -via J-Walk Blog

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